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The Slap by Christos Tsiolkas

The Slap (2008)

by Christos Tsiolkas

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1,7551244,022 (3.28)248
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Showing 1-5 of 116 (next | show all)
What a big fat damn hefty novel to spend a few snowy days with! I read this because there's a movie version coming out that sounded good. This novel is set in Australia and is written from the viewpoints of eight attendees at a suburban cookout. There's a few married couples, a grandfather, an employee, and a teenage babysitter. Sounds like a recipe for a nice Sunday afternoon - but when one father slaps a misbehaving child (not his), the repercussions are magnificently recounted by a master of getting into the heads of both genders. There is so much to appreciate here - especially the fact that this could have been all or any of us at this age and place in time. Completely absorbing, with some very frank sexual scenes and overflowing insight into the worst impulses and selfishness that we all, sadly enough, share. It's the ultimate domestic thriller - no murders but many little deaths of honor and honesty along the way. ( )
  froxgirl | Feb 24, 2015 |
I appreciate Tsiolkas' ability to take the reader into a character's head and I thoroughly enjoy the ride once I'm there. While I was occasionally I felt the authenticity lacking (just a little bit), I was impressed by the variety of points of view centring around the plot's premise of an incredibly badly-behaved child being slapped by an adult other than his own parents. It's a contentious subject, but ultimately not the the point of the novel--it's just a device to give us a series of wonderful character studies.
I was particularly taken with Tsiolkas' handling of the deep-seated racism, sexism and sexuality. None of it is shied away from and all of it is handled honestly. There is no proselytizing, just a wonderfully woven story around these themes.

If you think the book is actually about the slap, then you're missing out. Still, excellent title to sell some books, eh? ;)
( )
  jselliott | Dec 5, 2014 |
der perspektivenwechsel ist interessant und überzeugend durchgeführt. zwischen sex & drugs bleibt aber wenig raum für eine echte handlung. wenn man nicht gerade selbst mit seiner endlichkeit kämpft, wird das vermutlich nach 200 seiten schal. ( )
  pepe68 | Oct 20, 2014 |
I hated and loved this book. I almost gave up reading it, but I kept going and I'm so happy I did. It's not that the book improved towards the end, but because I could get a better understanding of the whole view and approach of the author. He did an amazing job describing the reality of this world in regards of oh so many modern taboo subjects. Yes, I did find it vulgar and disturbing at times, but unfortunately this is a very realistic picture of the actual society. ( )
  askum | Oct 7, 2014 |
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His eyes still shut, a dream dissolving and already impossible to recall, Hector's hand sluggishly reached across the bed.
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Book description

Although this is Australian author Tsiolkas’ fourth novel, it is the first to be published in the U.S. With its raw style, liberal use of profanity and racial epithets, and laserlike focus on the travails of suburban life, it is a down-and-dirty version of Tom Perrotta’s best-selling Little Children (2004). At a barbecue in a Melbourne suburb, a man loses his temper and slaps the child of the host’s friends. This incident unleashes a slew of divisive opinions, pitting friends and families against each other as the child’s parents take the man to court.
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At a festive barbecue in the Melbourne suburb a man slaps the child of another couple, triggering a court case and a variety of confrontations within the lives of the the families and friends present.

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