There was excitement within the BridLit team when this year’s Booker longlist was announced.
There among the contenders was the brilliant Max Porter, whose book, Lanny, is a worthy follow up to his first novel, Grief Is the Thing With Feathers, which won him the Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year, the International Dylan Thomas Prize and was shortlisted for many others.
He’s coming to BridLit on Tuesday 5 November, speaking in the Bull Ballroom at 4pm.
Lanny focuses on a village outside London and no different from many others. Yet it belongs to England’s mysterious past and its confounding present. Porter’s story is exhilarating, disquieting and deeply affecting.
This village belongs to the people who live in it and to the people who lived in it hundreds of years ago. It belongs to England’s mysterious past and its confounding present. But it also belongs to Dead Papa Toothwort, a figure that schoolchildren used to draw green and leafy, choked by tendrils growing out of his mouth.
Dead Papa Toothwort is awake. He is listening to this twenty-first-century village, to his English symphony. He is listening, intently, for a mischievous, enchanting boy whose parents have recently made the village their home. Lanny.
Lanny was the Guardian’s Book of the Week, with Alexandra Harris declaring: ‘Max Porter’s second novel is a fable, a collage, a dramatic chorus, a joyously stirred cauldron of words.’
Goodreads.com reviewer Emer says: ‘Max Porter is a genius.
‘There is absolutely no way I can think as to how to review or even describe this book. It’s pure emotion. Each word has meaning. I cried at the way simple words were put together to form these sentences that just tore their way into my heart. It’s contemporary, it’s fable, it’s dark, it’s painful, it’s hopeful, it’s true. It’s unlike anything else. It’s simply breathtaking.’
I haven’t read it yet but I am just about to buy it. It sounds absolutely my kind of thing and I’m looking forward to sinking into it. Hugely.