Laurence Dillon’s personal interest in all of this stems from some years ago when a huge swelling in his undercarriage was diagnosed as testicular cancer. He had an orchidectomy, a removal of the testicle. The remainder of the book is like a case study of PTSD. Having to face life being impotent, infertile and neutered, Dillon is utterly crushed and believes himself to be ugly, pointless, ‘stripped of worth and value’ in despair ‘at what has been lost to me for ever’. He can’t sleep with anyone. He can’t become a dad. Dillon’s chief lament is that he can no longer envisage ever forming a relationship. It is agony for him to glimpse young couples in parks or cafes, canoodling, embracing, ‘seeing their faces light up’.