Audio Book Review: Love, Sex and Other Foreign Policy Goals by Jesse Armstrong


Title: Love, Sex and Other Foreign Policy Goals
Author: Jesse Armstrong
Narrator: Chris Addison
Length: 9.5 Hours on 8 CDs (unabridged)
Publisher: HighBridge
ISBN: 978-1-6816-


It’s 1994, and war rages on in Yugoslavia—Sarajevo is under siege, and Bosnia’s different ethnic groups are battling for control of the newly independent country.
Hundreds of miles away, in a posh dining room in west London, Andrew is in a similarly precarious situation: the fine balancing act of breathing, blinking, and sipping champagne at the same time. Penny, who may be the love of his life, is about to make the Great Announcement to her parents: that she, Andrew, and a handful of other young idealists are headed to Bosnia to stop the war by performing peace plays from the back of their van.
But more important than peace—does Penny like Andrew, too? Or does she like Simon, who Andrew concedes is “essentially me, only better”? Will this trip across Europe finally bring them together, or will Andrew die in a minefield? And just how long will it take the gang to figure out that Andrew does not, in fact, speak Serbo-Croat?
From one of England’s most lauded comedy writers, Love, Sex, and Other Foreign Policy Goals is a satiric, absurd, and laugh-out-loud romp about tenderhearted, misguided dilettantes traveling through war-torn Europe, with nothing but a half-written script to protect them.

About the Author:

From an Oscar-nominated screenwriter, a laugh-out-loud Waugh-like satiric novel about a band of British dilettantes who try to halt the Bosnian war by performing “peace plays” from the back of their van in Sarajevo.

Jesse Armstrong is a cocreator and writer of the BAFTA Award-winning Peep Show, as well as Fresh Meat and Babylon.  He also cowrote The Thick of It and the Oscar-nominated In the Loop.  Love, Sex and Other Foreign Policy Goals is his first novel.

My Review:

The first time I heard of this book, it was from the First to Read program.  However, it only gave me a month to finish it and I could not finish it for many reasons.  I was expecting something humorous since the name of the title seem so.  I hate to give up on ARC books that I promise to read and review; that was why I had to request an audio copy when I saw it being offer again on Audio Jukebox.

The narrator, Chris Addison, seemed to help with my situation.  I could finally finish the book within a reasonable time-frame.  Since the book is written by a British celebrity, the narration does have British accent.  The pace was relaxing.  He did not add much emotion but the book itself is boring.  I was hoping Jesse Armstrong would have narrated his own book since he is somewhat known and authors reading their own books are usually better.

As for the story, I wish I have something nice to say.   The group had no idea what they were doing or what was going on in the world.  They just wanted to go in the war zone to spread peace.  They had no idea how to get, how to spread the words, or anything at all.  Most of the men just wanted to sleep with the women in the group and lied about everything.  Even after the trip, they had not learned anything.

2 out of 5 stars
Received a free e-copy from First to Read and audio copy from Audio Jukebox in exchange for an honest review.


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