Royston Blake is head doorman at Hoppers Wine Bar & Bistro in the backwater English town of Mangel. He drives a Ford Capri 2.8i and can walk the streets of his town knowing he's respected by one and all—until a rumor begins to circulate that Blake's “lost his bottle.” Even his sharp-tongued girl, Sal, has overheard the talk that the formerly fearsome bloke has gone soft, lost his edge, and become a pushover in a town where he can ill afford it. To make matters worse, the violent Munton brothers are after him, and the thought of ending up in the back of their bloody Meat Wagon is almost too much to bear. Something's gotta give, but it sure as hell won’t be Blake. Following advice from his best mate, Legsy, Blake embarks on a plan to re-establish his reputation as a hard man, ensure his appeal to the women of Mangel, and seal his future with the new owner of Hoppers. The logic of the plan is sound: knock around Baz Munton a bit and regain the respect of Mangel's populace. But sound logic never really took off in Mangel, and Blake finds he’s got his work cut out for him. This brutal black comedy introduces a wholly original voice to the ranks of contemporary literature’s most memorable protagonists.