Pete May is an author and journalist. Having finally clambered on to the property ladder in 2004 he now lives in north London with his wife, two daughters, a dog named Vulcan and a large collection of football programmes. As a journalist he has contributed to the Guardian, Observer and Independent and numerous other publications. He is an associate lecturer in sports journalism at the London College of Communication.
"A funny, charming book with a serious and even angry undertow ... Rent Boy works delightfully as a literary sitcom."
--Boyd Tompkin, The Independent
How One Man Spent 20 Years Falling Off the Property Ladder
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Pete May spent 20 years failing to get on the property ladder, struggling to find a decent flat in first Thatcher and then Blair's England. Only rising house prices, rent, shady landlords, eviction notices, washing-up rotas, and asbestos stood between him and independent living. With Dexys Midnight Runners, the Clash, Elvis Costello and Billy Bragg blaring from his speakers, May searched all of London for sane roommates and functional plumbing. Finding refuge in a group of like-minded Londoners, he was able to find comedy, hope and love amidst the cycle of packing boxes and heartbreak. This is a story of a real estate misfit -- one that should give hope to anyone making their next flatshare application.
"Having once shared a toasted sandwich with Pete May I can now only count myself lucky that I never shared a flat with him. Should be required reading for the Housing Minister."
"With anger, deadpan humour and an obvious love of London that has kept him in the city despite it all, May recounts a tale of ever increasing house prices that will be all too familiar to many."
--Amber Pearson, Daily Mail
"May's lively anecdotes and punchy style never fail to entertain and the London of the 1980s and 1990s is superbly drawn."
"I know exactly how he feels. I spent years timing my ablutions to the minute, in an attempt to get out of the bathroom at a time that allowed all my flatmates to get to work. To spare you the suspense, Mr May's story, like mine, has a happy ending, although owning a flat in Finsbury Park isn't everybody's idea of a fairytale. He's probably spending this weekend painting the bathroom Chinese Jade, and for that I salute him." Rosie Murray-West, The Daily Telegraph
To read Pete May's essay, "My life as a rent boy" in The Guardian, click here.