Not one of my three sisters is a loud, dirty, boozy girl. That’s probably a good thing for them — as well as me. But if one or two or all of them were, I would give them this book if only because Dylan Thomas, that loud, dirty, boozy poet, said I should.
Even without that recommendation, how can anyone resist a novel that reflects on the humanity of kangaroos, including “the kangaroolity of women and your wife beside you?”
Or one that offers an occasional “summary of what has gone before, for the benefit of new readers?”
Or one where an author sleeps with one of his own characters and conceives a child, who then goes on to write a book about what a terrible writer his father is?
Joyce loved it, so did Beckett and Graham Greene and Jorge Luis Borges, and Brendan Gleeson is trying to turn it into a movie. It’s Flann O’Brien’s ‘At Swim-Two-Birds’ and one of my favorite novels. Go on, find yourself a loud, dirty, boozy girl and give it to her.
Of course, if that doesn’t suit you, you can try my novel, which is available here: The Last Island
“Is this David? I’d really like to talk to you about your novel.”
He was a literary agent in New York, who’d just left a large and famous agency to start his own. He was aggressive, connected and smart, which was good — and he really liked my novel, which was better.
We went out for drinks. We signed a contract. We were partners, of sorts, sharing the same dream of getting my novel into the hands of an eager public. At least, that’s what I thought…
I wrote about my experiences with this agent for an Irish writing site in an article called, “I am Tenzing.” Now, you might be thinking, Sir Edmund Hemingway, Tenzing… tell me he didn’t use mountain climbing as a metaphor for getting a book published?
Well, it’s more about the Sherpas, and you can read the article here: ‘I am Tenzing‘
And the novel that is the snow-capped summit of that adventure is available here: THE LAST ISLAND