- Paperback: 485 pages
- Publisher: Allen & Unwin; First Edition (5th printing) edition (2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1741753597
- ISBN-13: 978-1741753592
- Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.1 x 1.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (286 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,941,839 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
The Slap Paperback – 2008
|New from||Used from|
The Amazon Book Review
Discover what to read next through the Amazon Book Review. Learn more.
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Top Customer Reviews
This is in many ways an old fashioned novel. It has a beginning, middle and an end.
Christos Tsiolkas is giving us his version of social reality and satirizing the concerns of the middle class of the 21st century. Maybe there's more cursing and sex than readers of literary novels like, but it's not gratuitous cursing and sex. It does contribute to the picture he paints of his characters. The men and women are ambivalent about one another. The characters are not always easy to like, but Mr. Tsoilkas helps us understand them.
I found Rosie, the indulgent mother of the 4 year child that is slapped, only too believable. Her child menaces an older child with a baseball bat and later in the novel spits on an elderly man out of pure malice and--that most insidious of 21st century diseases--entitlement Yet Rosie oblivious to her son's faults, is walking around with dirty hair explaining to a friend that she and her husband are trying to teach him about water conservation. But I felt sorry for her as well. She is isolated from her narcissistic mother and overly protective of her difficult husband and her young son, but enraged when her friends seem to favor family loyalties over loyalty to her.
One of the more sympathetic characters in the book is Manoli the elderly uncle of he man who delivers the slap. Manoli struggles to understand why his daughter-in-law would side with Rosie, rather than with her family. Manoli has seen great upheaval and spends one afternoon burying an old friend The scene at the house follow the funeral was one of my favorites It was filled with such warmth and regret. While talking to the widow, he hears that other friends have been largely reclusive since their son was shot and killed by drug dealers
After he visits this family and sees an elderly friend wasting away from lung cancer he is saddened that his own children's lives seem to be focused on petty concerns and that they have no conception of what is important in life.
Mr. Tsiolkas also deals with issues of multiculturalism, class, how people make their marriages work and how they raise their children The kids from broken homes--Richie, a young gay man reared only by his mother and Connie, Richie's best friend, who lives with her single aunt are the most appealing of the children.
Henry James urged the novelist to `try to be one of the people on whom nothing is lost.'
Mr. Tsiolkas is no Henry James. The Master would never write such graphic sex scenes or use such profanity, but very little seems to be lost on him and the book is dense enough to be worth re-reading.
This novel has aroused some real emotion and anyone whose writing can get people talking--no matter how bitterly--is not to be dismissed.
I was excited, as I often am, when I saw this title. As a person who shamelessly admits to sometimes judging a book by it's cover, I own to liking the look of the book, and the title just jumped out at Me. "The Slap"... Intriguing. The synopsis -- Someone slaps a child who is not their own... Oooh..., you've got Me.
A more apt title would have been "Slaps All Around", which is what I wanted to do to every character -- AND myself -- less than 40 pages in. If this author won an award that wasn't presented by his mother after a panel of close family members voted on a ballot with this single book as the entry, then I am stunned.
How can the entire premise of a book play such a minor role in the ENTIRE BOOK!? How do you manage to write a story with so many characters telling "their story" from multiple vantage points, and yet do so in such a way that the reader cares about NONE of them -- not the children, not the adults, not the seniors, not the dead, not the dying... No One. I, literally, got up from reading this book, logged onto my computer, and sought out reviews because I wanted to make sure I wasn't somehow missing something. I needed reassurance that my reading tastes had not all of a sudden left Me, and I couldn't recognize a good story, or good writing when I read it! And, by the way, for those who felt that this author was a "good writer" -- Read more. I finished this only because I hate not finishing a book, and I wanted to validate for myself that what I thought was the case, about 20 pages in, was actually the case -- This is an awful, awful book.
Many reviewers voiced displeasure with the crudeness and explicit nature of the book. Crude or gratuitious, in the context of a good story, can make perfect sense. Crude and gratuitious because you have nothing else of interest or substance to offer is unforgivable, especially from a published, "award-winning" author.
I cannot offer a strong enough warning to those who might be tempted to read this. Please, do yourself a favor -- don't do it. There are so many great books in New Arrivals, Bargain Bin, on the Classics Table, that you could delve into. Reread something you loved before. Reading this will only make you wish you had.
I feel about this book as I do when a writer/director takes a wonderful movie premise and completely mangles it -- What a waste. A waste of time for the writer. A waste of time for the reader. So, if you even remotely care about making each moment count..., don't waste a minute on this.
I only write reviews occasionally (although I read at least 100 books a year). I felt compelled to put this one up when I saw all the negative opinions here. This book may be a watershed. A must read for sure.