Saturday, 9 April 2011

‘Erotically polymorphous’, etc

How do you get reviewers to write about a book even before it is published? It helps if large chunks of the book (in this case, Jonathan Barrow’s The Queue) are quoted in another book (in this case, Andrew Barrow’s Animal Magic, his memoir of his brother, the author of The Queue, published by Cape in February). From reviews of AM, here are some words and phrases about The Queue: ‘Wildly inventive and surreal . . . erotically polymorphous . . . bizarre and beautiful . . . darkly comic . . . macabre . . . fantastical . . . savagely surreal . . . apocalyptically violent . . . scabrous . . . a thin line between brilliance and total barminess . . . slightly irritating’. Names invoked include Evelyn Waugh, Joe Orton, Mervyn Peake. Richard Canning in the Independent: ‘No stranger book than [Animal Magic] will appear this year – with the possible exception of Andrew Barrow’s deceased brother Jonathan’s novel The Queue, which sees publication in May, after more than 40 years of neglect.’

Expanded quotes are on the CBe website page for The Queue – which is available NOW from that page.

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