Thursday, March 8, 2012

Top ten weird histories

Lloyd Shepherd's first novel, The English Monster, is published by Simon and Schuster in the UK on March 1 2012, and by Washington Square Press in the US in May.

For the Guardian, he came up with a top ten list of weird histories, books that follow from the central idea "that history is a fantasy which can be reestablished by the author - and takes it in all sorts of directions." One title on his list:
Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

Kazuo Ishiguro is the master of small things beautifully described, and in Never Let Me Go he takes a well-established archetype - a boarding school in the English countryside - and slowly subverts it. His characters live in a world which is quintessentially English and yet somehow exquisitely different. The location of this difference gradually becomes apparent, and allows Ishiguro to ask a simple question: what would a world look like in which a major biological breakthrough had happened in the recent past? His world is one reeling from an ethical explosion which works its way out, beautifully and very, very sadly.
Read about the other entries on the list.

Never Let Me Go is on John Mullan's list of ten of the best sentences as titles.

--Marshal Zeringue