"James Kelman changed my life."
–Douglas Stuart, author of Shuggie Bain
"Probably the most influential novelist of the post-war period."
"Kelman has the knack, maybe more than anyone since Joyce, of fixing in his writing the lyricism of ordinary people's speech ... Pure aesthete, undaunted democrat–somehow Kelman manages to reconcile his two halves."
"The greatest British novelist of our time."
"A true original ... A real artist ... it's now very difficult to see which of his peers can seriously be ranked alongside [Kelman] without ironic eyebrows being raised."
–Irvine Welsh, Guardian
"A writer of world stature, a 21st century Modern."
"The real reason Kelman, despite his stature and reputation, remains something of a literary outsider is not, I suspect, so much that great, radical Modernist writers aren't supposed to come from working-class Glasgow, as that great, radical Modernist writers are supposed to be dead. Dead, and wrapped up in a Penguin Classic: that's when it's safe to regret that their work was underappreciated or misunderstood (or how little they were paid) in their lifetimes. You can write what you like about Beckett or Kafka and know they're not going to come round and tell you you're talking nonsense, or confound your expectations with a new work. Kelman is still alive, still writing great books, climbing."
–James Meek, London Review of Books
"The greatest living British novelist."
–Amit Chaudhuri, author of A New World
"What an enviably, devilishly wonderful writer is James Kelman."
–John Hawkes, author of The Blood Oranges