Sinclair often makes references to JG Ballard and so it seemed like a logical jump to go from one writer talking about London to another. In Lights Out for the Territory Sinclair sets out the ambition of making nine journeys across the capital using graffiti and signs to chart the real feelings and mood of places he walks through.
This is a very similar idea to London Orbital where he walked round the M25 noting the asylums and the decaying communities made accessible by the road but at the same time over taken by the concrete and the exhaust fumes.
here he starts by setting off from his native Hackney with the intention of walking to Greenwich and then back again over the other side of the river to the M11.
He packs it full of information not just about what he can see now but also the links to the past. he is a mind of information and facts and figures that come out almost like a stream of consciousness. This is a tour not just of the streets but a world of booksellers, film makers and communities that have gone, but because Sinclair is here, not been forgotten.
more next week...