Monday, 15 August 2011

Booker longlist: A Cupboard Full of Coats

So I finished the Cupboard Full of Coats and have been allowing it to settle with me for a couple of days. It's a searing piece of work. She handles her characters well, and the structure, expecially the transitions between the two time frames. It has a disarming simplicity and there were times when I wasn't completely convinced by the teenage voice of Jinx, but on the whole I believed in everyone enough and cared about them to want to keep reading. Did I feel I was in the hands of a master? no, and in that sense it has to come second to the Carol Birch. But given that it is a debut novel I thought it stood up well against Jane Rogers for example, and also against February, The Room and it far surpasses The Slap (all on last year's long list).

Now commenced Pigeon English. A theme seems to be emerging amongst this years list, of disaffected teenage voices....

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