A novel combining the flowing prose of a master wordsmith and a poignant critique of the social issues of the day is something of a holy grail for End Game.
So when Alex Knight’s Pride and Joy – which appears to tackle the issues faced by the NHS via a riveting fictional format – landed on our desks, we salivated in anticipation.
That was, until we read the accompanying PR blurb.
“The author Alex Knight is the founding partner of QFI and has been responsible for 20 per cent to 50 per cent reduction in the length of patient stay in many acute, community and mental health settings.”
“Alex would be happy to discuss any of the issues that are raised in the book and is also available for comment on the following topics: how to improve the NHS; addressing the constraints of the NHS… [and the] Theory of Constraints (TOC) methodology”.
We actually wanted help brushing up on our use of allegorical characters and archetypes in order to deconstruct conventional narrative tropes and achieve a richer meta-cultural meaning. But that wasn’t on the menu. Or in the index.
The plot may resonate with some HSJ readers as it concerns a failing hospital which has recently sacked its chief executive and is heading for meltdown.
While we’re huge fans of innovation, this may be the first time we’ve seen a novel written to promote a management consultancy.
If you like your fiction work-related and infused with a hefty dose of McKinsey jargon, let us know. We were sent nine copies.