Combining laddish savvy and good characterisation, this debut is a brilliant bitter-sweet novel about friendship, romance, love, death and turning thirty.
Pennance Ward and his closest friends have always got together in St Pete's cafe, for laughter, camaraderie and plenty of alcohol-fuelled debate. But with increasing commitments and responsibilities elsewhere, these times have become less frequent, with only Pennance happy to let life wash over him and leave today's decisions until tomorrow.
Then one of them, Ting, is killed, and the remaining friends must hold the stag-wake they had once casually discussed but never believed they would ever really see. And so Pennance takes charge of Ting's ashes during a weekend of dance, drugs, drink, sex and curry.
In this hilarious wake weekend of love and heartbreak, adventure and disaster, as the friends give Ting the send-off they promised him, they reminisce about the past, re-evaluate their lives and face up to the future. And Pennance experiences his own personal wake-up call.
Funny and moving, 'The Manana Man' is, above all, a story about friendship in its many forms that will make you laugh, cry and cry laughing.