Monday, 31 January 2011

BYT: 'writers of this calibre'

'writers of this calibre'

Planet Magazine has reviewed the Bright Young Things titles in their brand spanking new edition (no.201). Harri Roberts had this to say about the books...
On Tim Albin's shiny shiny cover designs:
They say never judge a book by its cover but... 'it's hard not to comment on the stylish and attractive manner in which these titles have been packaged.'

On Tyler Keevil's debut novel Fireball:
'Indeed, in all respects, this is a truly accomplished novel: funny, gripping and touching in turns, with a conclusion that continues to resonate long after the book is over. Keevil's skill as an author is everywhere evident: in the quirky dialogue, the lucid prose, and the skilful interweaving of multiple and non-linear narrative strands. This is clearly a novelist to be reckoned with.'

On Susie Wild's debut collection of short stories The Art of Contraception:
'The watchword in this collection is variety, Wild approaching her subject from a diverse range of narrative voices, viewpoints and structures. Underpinning this literary ventriloquism, however, is the distinctive and unifying voice of Wild herself: amusingly quirky and darkly humorous, yet always ready to identify and sympathise with the loneliness and sense of loss that pervades the lives of her characters.'
'The Art Of Contraception is well worth the read. If Parthian can continue to unearth writers of this calibre, then its new imprint will definitely be one to follow.'

On Wil Gritten's debut travelogue Letting Go:
'Letting Go is a diary of a drug- and alcohol-fuelled stomp around Latin America. Written with disarming (sometimes alarming) honesty, this is no ordinary travel book, but an almost confessional account of how close, as the blurb puts it, 'letting go' can come to 'losing it'. Yet despite the often painfully personal nature of its contents, this is a consistently entertaining book that is in no way self-indulgent.'

On J.P.Smythe's debut novel Hereditation:
'Where the novel is strongest is in the historical sections chronicling the story of each generation of the Sloane family - almost invariably a story of Gothic depravity. Told in bold outlines and a starkly terse style, the effect created is akin to that of fairy tale.'
[Incidentally, this is in contradiction to James' review in The Spectator's book blog: 'The episodic flashbacks to Sloane family history are, I’m afraid, very much the weak part of the novel.' Who is right? You tell us.]

So, thanks Planet :) 201 also contains great essays by Gerry Feehily on 'France and the Roma Question' and Jane Aaron on 'Gender and Welsh Writing in English'.

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