Monday, 3 November 2014

Lifting the Lid by Rob Johnson

A comedy thriller about overbearing mothers, toilet mishaps and dogs that refuse to do as they’re told.

About Rob Johnson:

Even before I read his bio, I knew that Rob Johnson would be an interesting person. His book told me that he just had to be. So here’s the bio, and you’ll see what I mean:

Having worked for several years as an administrator and publicist for touring theatre companies, I decided to try my hand at writing plays myself. Four of these were professionally produced and toured throughout the UK, but when public funding for non-commercial theatre virtually dried up overnight I was forced into the world of ‘proper jobs’ as my father liked to call them.

During this period, I also made use of my Equity card and appeared in numerous TV shows as a ‘supporting artiste’, otherwise and somewhat less attractively known as an ‘extra’. (Ricky Gervaise was spot on by the way. Just wish I’d written ‘Extras’ myself.)

I now live on a 5-acre smallholding in Greece with my partner Penny, six rescue dogs and three cats and divide my time between writing and growing olives organically for oil.

About Lifting the Lid:

It’s taken me ages to read this book. That’s not code for “it’s not very good”, honestly, just bear with me. It took me ages because I wanted to read every word properly - no skimming allowed - and because there have been so many other things on the go recently that I haven’t been able to concentrate on it. And I wanted to.

Now that I’m done, I’ve been wholly rewarded. The story is just so much FUN! Trevor is a boring (yes) man with a boring job and an AWFUL mother who decides to chuck it all in one day and buy a camper. So he and his dog Milly head off into the sunset and look for adventure. He doesn’t get very far as the camper needs repairs, so he books into a hotel for the night.

And so begins Trevor’s adventures. His dear mother sets the police onto him simply because she doesn’t like him much, and before he knows it, a private detective, MI5 and group of crooks are after him as well. Quiet, boring Trevor can’t understand what he’s done to bring the wrath of the good, bad and ugly down on himself. All he did was break a cistern lid, that’s not a crime is it?

I loved the story. It is entertaining, well-written, cleverly planned and expertly timed. The separate threads of Johnson’s story are carefully prepared and then expertly woven together to culminate at the finale. The characters are larger-than-life, without quite slumping into the “caricature” pit. Johnson gives his reader variety in mood, pace, setting and dialogue, never giving them a chance to become bored or to be able to predict where the story is heading.

You can find out more about Rob Johnson and his books on his website:



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