Interview with Christos Tsiolkas

the_slap.jpg   The Slap by Christos Tsiolkas has been published in Britain to a number of rather glowing reviews. A while back he was interviewed by Tom Shone from "The Times":
"I think Australian writing has been locked up in the shadow of the English and the Irish," he says. "In the sense that Australians don't want to write the Australian novel, they want to write the perfect English novel or the perfect Irish novel. What I love about the Americans is that they have found an English that is distinctly theirs." He could as easily be talking about his own declaration of independence with The Slap, a tremendously vital book in every sense. Completed at a gallop, it fairly crackles along, juiced up with novelistic licence and peeled-eyeball candour, the characters driven by their appetites into a thrilling, vital approximation of what it is to be alive. When he handed the book to his editor, she got back to him in just three days. It should have told him something.

"I had no idea [The Slap] was going to take me to Lexington Avenue. I really didn't. Trying to stand back, I'm interested in why it has proved so popular. I wonder what it says about contemporary writing -- can you be popular without being populist? Can you write for a large audience in a way that allows you to do the best work you can that is not condescending?"
The interview is titled "Novel of the year?" which might be a good pointer come Man Booker longlist time.

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This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on July 26, 2010 9:26 AM.

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