Analysis of how the character Daniel weir has changed throughout his journey in the book - Espedair Street by Iain Banks

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Analysis of how the character Daniel weir has changed throughout his journey in the book.

Espedair Street by Iain Banks is a novel which is pretending to be a rock star autobiography; the story of a fictional seventies band Frozen Gold as told by bass player and song writer Danny Weir. It is told using a series of flashbacks which converge to explain the present, Danny living as a recluse, pretending to be his own caretaker in a bizarre Victorian folly in Glasgow. Espedair Street is about the emptiness that can come to fill the life of someone who has realised all his dreams on a massive scale and still not be where they want to be. It's also about other things like the hedonistic life of the seventies rock star, the things that we do that we regret and feel guilty about later, and the effects that these have on us. The hook for the story is its dramatic opening lines “two days ago I decided to kill my self” from this I gathered the book was set to be bleak although interesting, the reader would immediately be drawn in and want to read on.

What I found most effective was the way the character of Daniel Weir was developed constantly during the book. Daniel, also known as 'Weird', is a thirty-one year old reclusive rock star who has a pessimistic attitude towards life and is intensely introspective. Throughout his childhood he struggled to fit in with his peers and had a troubled relationship with his parents. This has led him to feel constantly self-conscious and he often talks about how ugly he is, "I'm a monster, a mutant, a gangling ape", "I've been a funny looking kid and I've blossomed into an ugly young man." This attitude gains Daniel a certain amount of sympathy from the reader because instead of feeling jealous of his famous lifestyle, I actually end up feeling sorry for him. As this young 16 year old boy Daniel found comfort in song writing, it is evident this is something he has confidence in “talent is what I had” but was less confident in his self image, this is clear when he says “I think you c-c-could go…you know (I wanted to say to the top)”although his stutter shows his nerves and shyness this is the moment he introduces his music to the local band Frozen Gold. Despite never actually intending to be part of a band only the writer of their music, he soon found himself rocketing to success. In a relatively short time he had gone from a local lad working at Dinwoodies engineering firm in paisley, to an international superstar. However fame and fortune didn't come easy for Daniel, as he had to sacrifice many meaningful things in his life for the sake of the band.

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We only get a brief look on the rock star jimmy hay, the name Daniel goes by in his famous other life. We get the sense he is tame for a rock star as Daniel is sensible compared with actions of his fellow band members that are no greater than that of documented real rock musicians. Daniels fame has great fortunes as well as misfortunes for instance his increasing income, “Frozen Gold, the five of us were probably out grossing the GNP of some small third world countries” which would have been of huge benefits and change to Weir due ...

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