In early 2006, Chuck Ramkissoon is found dead at the bottom of a New York canal. In London, a Dutch banker named Hans van den Broek hears the news, and remembers his unlikely friendship with Chuck and the off-kilter New York in which it flourished: the New York of 9/11, the powercut and the Iraq war.
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Amazon Exclusive: A Q&A with Joseph O'Neill
Joseph O’Neill was born in Ireland and raised in Holland. He received a law degree from Cambridge University and worked as a barrister in London. He writes regularly for The Atlantic Monthly and is the author of two previous novels, This Is the Life and The Breezes, and of a family history, Blood-Dark Track, which was a New York Times Notable Book. O'Neill received the 2009 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction for his third novel, Netherland. He lives with his family in New York City.
Question: President Obama mentioned in a New York Times Magazine profile that he’s reading Netherland. How do you feel about the President reading your book?
Joseph O'Neill: I'm very honored, of course.Question: How is the world of Netherland particular to the United States after 9/11?
Joseph O'Neill: The story takes place in the aftermath of 9/11. One of the things it does is try to evoke the disorientation and darkness of that time, which we only emerged from with the election of President Obama.Question: What is the importance of the sport of cricket in this book? Do you play?
Joseph O'Neill: I love sport and play cricket and golf myself. Sport is a wonderful way to bring together people who would otherwise have no connection to each other.Question: One of your reviewers calls Netherland an answer to The Great Gatsby. Were you influenced by Fitzgerald’s book, and was your book written with that book in mind?
Joseph O'Neill: Halfway through the book I realized with a slightly sinking feeling that the plot of Netherland was eerily reminiscent of the Gatsby plot: dreamer drowns, bystander remembers. But there are only about 5 plots in existence, so I didn't let it bother me too much. Fitzgerald thankfully steered clear of cricket.Question: Many reviewers have commented on the “voice” of this novel. How it is more a novel of voice than of plot? Do you agree with this?
Joseph O'Neill: Yes, I would agree with that comment. This is not a novel of eventful twists and turns. It is more like a long-form international cricket match (which can last for 5 days without a winner emerging), about nuance and ambiguity and small slippages of insight. And about language, of course.
(Photo © Lisa Acherman)About the Author:
Né en 1964 en Irlande, Joseph O’Neill a passé son enfance entre le Mozambique, l’Iran et les Pays-Bas. Après quelques années à Londres, il s’installe à New York en 1998. Netherland, son troisième roman, a été unanimement salué par la critique.
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Book Description Center Point, U.S.A., 2008. Library Binding. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. Large Print/Large Type. Careful packing, quick posting. Other Large Print titles available. Bookseller Inventory # 018610
Book Description Center Point, 2008. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 1602853142
Book Description Center Point Large Print, 2008. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Lrg. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX1602853142
Book Description Center Point, 2008. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P111602853142
Book Description Center Point. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 1602853142 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW6.0812729