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The Slapby Christos Tsiolkas
Synopses & Reviews
Read Christos Tsiolkas's blogs on the Penguin Community.
Read a review of The Slap on WorldNews.tk.
Read a review of The Slap on Timesonline.co.uk.
In this powerful and riveting novel, literary phenomenon Christos Tsiolkas unflinchingly exposes the inner- workings of domestic life, friendship and parenthood in the twenty-first century, and reminds us of the passions and malice that family loyalty can provoke. When a man slaps another couple’s child at a neighborhood barbecue, the event send unforeseeable shockwaves through the lives of all who are witness to it. Told from the points of view of eight people who were present, The Slap shows how a single action can change the way people think about how they live, what they want, and what they believe forever. “Tsiolkas is a hard-edged, powerful writer….The novel transcends both suburban Melbourne and the Australian continent, leaving us exhausted but gasping with admiration.” –Washington Post
“This astute exploration of suburban aspirations and failings . . . . vividly demonstrates the wide-ranging effects of a single moment’s rash decision. . . . Beyond simply igniting the plot, the fateful slap draws attention to generational and philosophical differences regarding family life and the complex political, social, and ethnic milieu of contemporary Australia.” —Publishers Weekly
“Radiates with vitality as it depicts the messy complications of family life.” –Booklist
“Complex and multilayered. …intertwined lives and slowly revealed connections make for a singular reading experience.” –Library Journal
“Wildly energetic and fearless, thrillingly about our lives now.” – Helen Garner, author of The Spare Room
“A gripping suburban fable.” – Men’s Style
“Strikingly tender . . . it claws into you with its freshness and truth.”—Sydney Morning Herald
"This astute exploration of suburban aspirations and failings, winner of the Commonwealth Prize and Tsiolkas's first novel to be published in the U.S., opens at a barbecue in Melbourne, Australia, where nearly two dozen characters are introduced in the opening vignette. The reader barely has time to absorb their names and relationships before the pivotal event occurs: a man, Harry, slaps a bratty child who is threatening his son. At the center of the altercation are Hector, Harry's cousin, and Hector's wife, Aisha, who is friends with Rosie, the mother of the boy who's been slapped. When Rosie and her alcoholic husband press charges, longstanding relationships threaten to fall apart. Told from eight perspectives, each of which gets a novella-like chapter, the novel vividly demonstrates the wide-ranging effects of a single moment's rash decision on characters as varied as Harry's 71-year-old uncle and a high school student coming to terms with his sexuality. Beyond simply igniting the plot, the fateful slap draws attention to generational and philosophical differences regarding family life and the complex political, social, and ethnic milieu of contemporary Australia." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Winner of the 2009 Commonwealth Writers' Prize. When a man slaps a child who is not his own at a neighborhood barbecue, the act triggers a series of repercussions in the lives of the people who witness the event.
The sensational international bestseller by Australia's "preeminent contemporary novelist" (The Age), in his United States debut
Winner of the 2009 Commonwealth Writers' Prize, Christos Tsiolkas's The Slap is a riveting page-turner and a powerful, haunting rumination on contemporary middle-class family life. When a man slaps a child who is not his own at a neighborhood barbecue, the act triggers a series of repercussions in the lives of the people who witness the event-causing them to reassess their values, expectations, and desires. For readers of Jonathan Franzen and Tom Perrotta, this is a compelling account of modern society and the way we live today.
About the Author
Christos Tsiolkas is an award-winning novelist, playwright, essayist, and screenwriter. He lives in Melbourne, Australia.
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