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About this product
- DescriptionA group of sixth formers vandalize an exclusive Georgetown club on the day of their school leaving, coincidentally also the day of their country's independence. Several of their parents think a lesson is in order and the semblance of a trial is organized. The sentences they are given are suspended provided that they fulfil the task set by their English teacher, who has interceded on their behalf. Each must write a short story that says something about the newly independent Guyana. Years later, Mark McWatt, one of the group, is handed the papers of his old school friend, Victor Nunes, who has disappeared, feared drowned, in the Guyanese interior. The papers contain some of the stories, written before the project collapsed when the group realized the trial was a hoax. As a tribute to Victor Nunes, McWatt decides to collect the rest of the stories from his friends. Suspended Sentences is a tour-de-force of invention. The stories, entertaining in their own right, whether supposedly written by eighteen year olds or in later adult life, work t only like Chaucerian tales to reveal their teller, but have an affectionately satirical take on the nature of Guyanese fiction making. By ranging across Guyanese ethnicities, gender and time in the purported authorship of these stories, McWatt creates a richly dialogic work of fiction. And when McWatt apparently slips some of his own biography into a brilliantly comic story of betrayal (that ends in the victim's suicide), but told by ather member of the group, the implications of the collection's subtitle, 'Fictions of atonement' become teasingly ambiguous.
- Author BiographyProfessor Mark McWatt was born in Guyana in 1947. He took his first degree at the University of Toronto, then went to Leeds University to complete a Ph.D. He is currently Head of the English Department at the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill campus, Barbados. He has published two collections of poetry, 'Interiors' (1989) and 'The Language of Eldorado' (1994) that won the Guyana Prize. He has published widely in journals on aspects of Caribbean literature and is joint editor of the Oxford Book of Caribbean Poetry (2004).
- PrizesWinner of Commonwealth Writers' Prize Best First Book 2006.
- Author(s)Mark McWatt
- PublisherPeepal Tree Press Ltd
- Date of Publication13/07/2005
- SubjectGeneral & Literary Fiction
- Place of PublicationYorkshire
- Country of PublicationUnited Kingdom
- ImprintPeepal Tree Press Ltd
- Weight304 g
- Width136 mm
- Height206 mm
- Spine20 mm
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