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The Slap Christos Tsiolkas presents an apparently harmless domestic incident as seen from eight very different perspectives The result is an unflinching interrogation of our lives today; of the modern family and domestic life in the 21st century a deeply thought provoking novel about boundaries and their limits This was one of the best books I've read in a long time Filled with despicable but ultimately somehow sympathetic characters a microcosm of friends and family becomes a commentary on the social make up of the city of Melbourne the country of Australia and perhaps the world That the story is told from multiple perspectives but still chronologically ie the episode around which the plot is centred isn't retold again and again is genius and the complex nuanced emotions of reactions to and repercussions of a single event are ably described and brought to life by Tsiolkas An uncomfortable but highly recommended read Thank you Christos Tsiolkas you finally made my mind up for me and I have flung your horrid novel away from me in a graceless convulsion which mixed repulsion and depression in eual parts with a dash of glee Because for many pages I was desperately seeking a casus belli Something I could put my finger on I was a closet Slap hater at this point I couldn't uite admit the horror of this novel to myself I needed to find something definite a line in the print where I could say thus far and no fartherOn and on I read And finally one such moment arrived on page 225 The scene is the grimy household of Rosie and Gary and their son Hugo who is somewhere between three and four years of age Hugo is the slapee of the story Now one of the things about Hugo is that he's still suckling at his mother's breast which everyone thinks is a bit gross because he's nearly four you know and I was agreeing with this since every single time Hugo hove into view he was like a nipple seeking missile aiming straight at his mum's brassiere and we would get another description of the act and everyone's reaction to the act Every timeSo now here on p225 we have Gary the sex starved husband wrestling with his young son for control of the breasts She was feeding Hugo on the couch when Gary walked back into the room He came and stood over them He watched his son suck contentedly from Rose's tit 'I want some of that' Rosie frowned 'Don't Gaz' 'I do i want some of your boobie' Hugo dropped his nipple and looked mutinously at his father 'No It's mine' 'No it isn't' Hugo looked at her for encouragement 'Whose boobies are they 'They belong to all of us' she said laughingThen the atmosphere turns nasty and Gary and the kid begin to suabble viciously about the breasts At this point I murmered Thank you Christos At last I knew you had it in you placed the novel down upon my reading desk and prepared for the traditional flinging at wall ceremony PREVIOUSLY ON PAUL BRYANT READS 'THE SLAP'P 150 The thing is I have seven seven books I really actually do want to read coming my way very soon I hear the tramp tramp tramp of the feet of several burly postmen This book not so much But you know the feeling when you walk out of the shop and you get home and you just don't remember stuffing the two packs of sausages three packs of wafer thin Wiltshire ham and two small jars of marmite down your kecks So here I am on p 150 I don't know how I got here or how I'm going to get out of this geyser of Ozzie soapsuds Can there really be another 330 pages to go The Shangri Las PB is that a bestseller you got there Uh huh Gee it must be great reading it all day By the way where'd you get itPb dressed in black leather channelling Mary Weiss I met it in the Sainsbury store – 60% off You get the pictureShangs Yes we seePb That's when I becameA reader of The SlapMy friends were always putting it downShangs Down downOnly good for the beach they said with a frownShangs Frown frownThey told me it was badAnd I knew I'd been hadI'm sorry I started it – reader of The SlapThe page 100 decision – to continue or to not continue that is the uestion Well what about this blurb on the back This is bugging me This event reverberates through the lives of everyone who witnesses it happenIs that even grammatical I would have thought EITHERThis event reverberates through the lives of everyone who sees it happenORThis event reverberates through the lives of everyone who witnesses itNo need for the happen The happen is otiose So the blurb writer can't write But I dunno Maybe I'll continue It's so long These modern writers they must get paid by the word Never mind the uality feel the width On Goodreads they all stop and stareThey can't hide the sneers but I don't careI think I've become a –Reader of The Slapmotorbike noises fade This isn't any old review My opinion on this book has sparked an idea for a discussion I'd like to have with you about offensive content in novels I'd like to know how you react to it But first let's get to my review of this bookThis book was written by a very highly acclaimed AustralianGreek author I have to say that I admire him and his blatant honesty And this is the first book I've read of his I find it hilarious how so many people who have read this book have given it bad reviews and low ratings because they believe that the characters were horrible and the language was horrible and 'why would anyone want to write about such uninteresting people' It really makes me laugh because clearly the people who have these opinions have totally missed the point Opinions like these are what I like to call 'surface opinions' Surface opinions as the term suggests do not attempt to dig any deeper than what can be seen or read in this caseThe point of this book in my opinion is to highlight the pettiness cruelness complete self centeredness of humankind; the attributes we fail to recognize in ourselves or deny even exist We are monsters people Deep down there is as much bad as there is good in us and this book depicts this realistically It's void of censorship void of phoniness void of pretence This book is what it is because this is what the world is Run by a pack of selfish animals This is who we are and I think anyone who denies it is kidding themselves Even if you do not actually behave appallingly like some of these characters do take a moment to think Have you ever smiled at someone pretended to be polite and at the same time cursed at their existence We all have at some time or another It's human nature This is what this book represents human nature It's honest It's blunt It's realGreat book I recommend it to those who are not afraid of a bit of honesty If you don't like reading about the world you live in Don't read this book Now to my uestionHow do you feel about offensive content in books If you are disgusted by it do you ever stop to think Gee there must be a REASON it's like this and try to take an objective stance And another thing please please please do not assume that the characters in someone's book represent WHO THE AUTHOR IS This is a big mistake I believe that readers make The author is most likely trying to depict a certain person or stereotype Perhaps the author too is disgusted by their characters' behaviour but they wouldn't do their book any justice by censoring these things would they Take a moment to think about that too Look deeper And don't make assumptionsThoughts I read constantly I read for information for enlightenment for pleasure I read anywhere from 2 to 5 books a month and have for some 45 years I was excited when I first saw this title as I am one who shamelessly admits to ofttimes judging a book by it's cover I own to liking the look of the book and the title just jumped out at Me The Slap Intriguing The synopsis Someone slaps a child who is not their own Oooh you've got MeA apt title would have been Slaps All Around which is what I wanted to do to every character AND myself less than 40 pages in If this author won an award that wasn't presented by his mother after a panel of close family members voted on a ballot with this single book as the entry then I am stunnedHow can the entire premise of a book play such a minor role in the ENTIRE BOOK How do you manage to write a story with so many characters telling their story from multiple vantage points and yet do so in such a way that the reader cares about NONE of them not the children not the adults not the seniors not the dead not the dying No One I literally got up from reading this book logged onto my computer and sought out reviews because I wanted to make sure I wasn't somehow missing something I needed reassurance that my reading tastes had not all of a sudden left Me and I couldn't recognize a good story or good writing when I read it And by the way for those who felt that this author was a good writer Really I finished this only because I hate not finishing a book and I wanted to validate for myself that what I thought was the case about 20 pages in was actually the case This is an awful awful bookMany reviewers voiced displeasure with some of the crudeness and explicit scenes in the book Crude or gratuitous in the context of a good story can make perfect sense Crude and gratuitous because you have nothing else of interest or substance to offer is unforgivable And from an award winning author nonethelessI cannot offer a strong enough warning to those who might be tempted to read this Please do yourself a favor don't do it There are so many great books in New Arrivals Bargain Bins on the Classics Table that you could delve into Reread something you loved before Reading this will only make you wish you hadI feel about this book as I do when a writerdirector takes a wonderful movie premise and completely mangles it What a waste A waste of time for the writer A waste of time for the reader So if you even remotely care about making each moment count don't waste a minute on this

  • Paperback
  • 496 pages
  • The Slap
  • Christos Tsiolkas
  • English
  • 07 July 2016
  • 9781848873551

About the Author: Christos Tsiolkas

Christos Tsiolkas is the author of five novels Loaded which was made into the feature film Head On The Jesus Man and Dead Europewhich won the 2006 Age Fiction Prize and the 2006 Melbourne Best Writing Award He won Overall Best Book in the Commonwealth Writers' Prize 2009 was shortlisted for the 2009 Miles Franklin Literary Award long listed for the 2010 Man Booker Prize and won the Australi

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