Wednesday, May 2, 2007
Nicola Barker is one of my favorite young british writers at work today. I've been following her for a while, and would underline her novel 'Wide Open' (winner of The IMPAC award), featuring an improbable array of peculiar characters, such as Lili, the girl that lives in a house that farms boar... Another impressive novel of hers is 'Behindlinds', main character: Wesley, a somewhat disabled persona who is victim of multiple stalkings!(he has some mutilation going on in his body '--mutilation is one of the fascinations of Barker. She once said that she was stunned as a kid by a group of black men going in a public pool and one of them was armless but swam with incredible vigour, holding on to his stumps). 'Clear' takes as the main character the illusionist David Blaine entering a glass box adjacent to London's Thames River. Blaine spent 44 days there attempting to starve himself, and this real event is Barker's excuse to delve into all sorts of impressions and ideas, taking diverse characters to project a pervasive and incredibly interesting domestic banality.