Peter Austin In the Event

ISBN 13: 9780615846422

In the Event

 
9780615846422: In the Event

If there were a prize for Canada’s most surprising book of the year, Peter Austin’s In The Event would surely win it. A comic novel describing and evaluating the often bizarre events of contemporary domestic and social life, with a multi-generational cast of interwoven and well-realized characters ,would not be unusual, but Austin’s novel, quite amazingly, is written in formal verse, in a shimmer of heroic couplets and other rhyming and metrical forms, which, because he is such a fine craftsman, creates a startling, oppositional and highly creative tension between form and content as he explores and satirizes our often pathetic and vain efforts to transform life’s strange events into sense somewhat in the way Pope skewered absurdity and pretension in “The Rape of the Lock.” With the 21 chapters/cantos of poetry driving us briskly along, complete with some excruciatingly brilliant rhymes, vocabulary and masterful shifts of tone, we are taken through a world of mixed-up babies, diaper rashes, projectile vomiting, a first menstruation and a first wet dream, Skype love, a superb and hilarious mock-epic battle of bridesmaids, a disastrous stag night, house buying, a possible school shooting (harmless), cervical dysfunction, and much more, complete with a spray of quotes and references ranging from King Lear to the Three Stooges. Everything is brilliantly played for its humour. A father/son talk about sex is hilarious, as is a non-idyllic first night of a honeymoon on a cruise ship, and the constant comic interplay between episode and form could only be achieved by a poet completely in command of technique and a sensitive and sympathetic observer whose comic imagination illuminates every page and turns the particular into the universal. The characters are recognizable, absurd, helpless, brave and funny, affectionately embraced as they try to negotiate what the world throws at them. We should give thanks for Peter Austin’s fully earned success in this novel, for the control, ambition, the humour. He clearly enjoyed writing this book and I know we will hear much more of him in future. Mainly we should give thanks that the next Pope, to exaggerate a little, is Canadian.
~ Christopher Wiseman

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About the Author:

Peter Austin, who grew up in England, now lives with his wife and three daughters in Toronto, Canada, where he teaches English at Seneca College. This is his fourth book and his first verse novel (the previous three having been poetry collections). In an earlier incarnation, he wrote a musical adaptation of The Wind in the Willows which achieved four professional productions.

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Austin, Peter
Published by White Violet Press, Hemet, CA (2013)
ISBN 10: 0615846424 ISBN 13: 9780615846422
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Book Description White Violet Press, Hemet, CA, 2013. Soft cover. Book Condition: As New. No Jacket. Paperback is in as new condition with author's signature (first name only) on half title page with this inscription: "To Chris with best wishes. Peter" Author also included a quote from Hugh Kingsmith on same page: "Friends are God's apology for relations." "If there were a prize for Canada's most surprising book of the year, Peter Austin's In The Event would surely win it. A comic novel describing and evaluating the often bizarre events of contemporary domestic and social life, with a multi-generational cast of interwoven and well-realized characters ,would not be unusual, but Austin's novel, quite amazingly, is written in formal verse, in a shimmer of heroic couplets and other rhyming and metrical forms, which, because he is such a fine craftsman, creates a startling, oppositional and highly creative tension between form and content as he explores and satirizes our often pathetic and vain efforts to transform life's strange events into sense somewhat in the way Pope skewered absurdity and pretension in The Rape of the Lock.". Signed by Author(s). Bookseller Inventory # 8090

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Peter Austin
Published by White Violet Press
ISBN 10: 0615846424 ISBN 13: 9780615846422
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Book Description White Violet Press. Paperback. Book Condition: VERY GOOD. Light rubbing wear to cover, spine and page edges. Very minimal writing or notations in margins not affecting the text. Possible clean ex-library copy, with their stickers and or stamp(s). Bookseller Inventory # 2708151391

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