Read Merciless Gods by Christos Tsiolkas Online


Love, sex, death, family, friendship, betrayal, tenderness, sacrifice and revelation...This incendiary collection of stories from acclaimed bestselling international writer Christos Tsiolkas takes you deep into worlds both strange and familiar, and characters that will never let you go....

Title : Merciless Gods
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781760112240
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 323 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Merciless Gods Reviews

  • Carina
    2019-03-04 10:43

    The writing as usual was clever and grumpy. Some of the earlier stories were stunning - particularly the title story. However the collection is themed by it's dark and almost competitive brutality - each story seems to want to shock more than the last. "You're still there?" the book seems to ask the reader disdainfully, at the end of each tale. "Right, let's see if you're still hanging on after this one.."I stubbornly hung on until the end but really should have let go earlier.

  • Shelleyrae at Book'd Out
    2019-03-05 08:39

    Best known for his most recent novels, The Slap and Barracuda, Merciless Gods is Christos Tsiolkas's first published collection of short stories.The themes of many of the stories in this collection are strongly connected to Christos's life experiences as a gay man and as the son of (Greek) immigrant parents. Yet they also explore the universal trials of friendship, family relations, love, aging and death.It is sometimes difficult to see past some of the cruder scenes and language in his stories, which are often unapologetically provocative, brutal and seething, yet it is important to note they are also rarely entirely devoid of tenderness, beauty or humour. I found several stories absolutely compelling including the titular 'Merciless Gods', 'Saturn Return' and 'Sticks, Stones' but 'Porn 1', 'Porn 2' and 'Porn 3' were a bit much for me.One of the reasons I rarely read short stories is that narrative is often neglected in favour of theme, but that is not the case here. I admire the way in which Tsioklas constructs his stories, creating a complete narrative, with strong characters, in just a few pages. Not everyone will appreciate, nor stomach, Merciless Gods, it is a collection that seems designed to challenge and shock, but for those readers willing to approach the stories with an open mind, there are rewards to be had.

  • Paul Bryant
    2019-03-05 12:04

    I’m wondering whether I’ve read too many short stories, which is a terrible thought as I’ve got a whole pile of unread short story collections right here. Maybe I’ve read too many novels too! Maybe I’ve read too many words! No, no, this is madness. Take a deep breath… These gloomy thoughts came to me because this is a really decent collection of stuff by Mr Tsiolkas, I can’t fault it at all, tough situations, lurid sex, violent outbursts, all the ingredients to keep the Kitchen Craft Master Class Induction-Safe Stainless Steel Stock Pot bubbling merrily, and yet it appeared no other thing to me than a foul and pestilent congregation of vapors. A well written pestilent congregation of vapors, for sure. One miserable circumstance after another. I seem to remember praising some authors for their uncompromising rigorous bitter angry painful exposures of the oppression of modern life. Seems inconsistent not to do the same here. Aw, you know what, I’m gettin’ old, folks. 2.5 stars, but if you ain’t read too many depressing short stories, could be an exhilarating 4 for you.

  • Kimbofo
    2019-03-11 16:41

    Christos Tsiolkas has a reputation as a bold writer of daring, often controversial, fiction. Merciless Gods, first published in Australia in 2014 but recently released in the UK, is a collection of short stories that continues Tsiolkas’ trademark flare for writing edgy stories about taboo subjects.There are 15 stories in the collection — and they’re not for the faint hearted. Even those that are “tame” by Tsiolkas’ standards are still confronting and unsettling. There are tales about homophobia, racism, revenge, death, grief, power, parenthood, friendship and family. And most are set in the suburbs of Melbourne, Sydney and Perth.The range and breadth of the collection is one of its great strengths, because each story has its own distinctive “voice”: we hear from brothers, mothers, students, immigrants, young lovers, lost souls. Some are in the first person, others in the third person.Many taboo subjects are addressed, from male rape to drug addiction, but while the writing is fearless — Tsiolksas doesn’t hold back on detail or imagery — it’s usually with a view to shining a light on injustice, bigotry and prejudice. In other words, these aren’t gratuitous tales; there’s a message at their core even if the reader might need to be shaken out of their own complacency to find them.Tsiolkas is at his best concentrating on his “pet” subjects — what it is to be gay, the fraught and complicated relationships between generations, and cultural baggage that comes from being the child of an immigrant. But he also writes powerful stories about heterosexual couples and friendship.To read the rest of my review, please visit my blog.

  • Trevor
    2019-03-19 13:44

    Merciless Gods is a wonderful set of short stories by Christos Tsiolkas, beautifully written, often confrontational and not to everyone’s taste. Touching all types of emotion but mainly about love, A mother’s love for her sonA son’s love for his fatherThe love of best friendsA brother’s loveLaughing at some of the stories, tears in my eye when others finished, I loved this book.These are wonderful stories, and show’s Tsiolkas is a master at work.

  • Simon
    2019-03-12 12:05

    There's a reason that I have taken four months to read this and that is partly because I didn't want this collection to end and partly because almost every story needs a mini break after its intensity. Tsiolkas likes to write about the people we don't like and to talk about the things we don't want to talk about. That's why I love his writing and admire him so, you can't binge on them though. Each one is an angry dark twinkling little gem!

  • Laura Matthew
    2019-02-21 13:52

    Searing, uncomfortable, achingly beautiful. I'm reminded how important it is to read contemporary Australian fiction. There's so much here that resonates, and I loved sinking into parts of the Aussie-flavoured identity we tend to hide or wilfully ignore. Like The Slap, there's a powerful interplay of race, class, sexuality, generational divide etc woven with keen insight and depth. The observations are brutal, judgement-free, and deeply compassionate. Tsiolkas is a class act.

  • Claire Melanie
    2019-03-04 10:03

    A wonderful collection of beautifully written stories. But they're also deeply unsettling as with other work by Tsiolkas. I'm yet to meet a character of his that is easy to like because they're all so truly human

  • Michael
    2019-03-10 11:48

    As most people know, I am a big fan of transgressive fiction and in Australia there is one author that doesn’t shy away from a touch or taboo subject. This author is Christos Tsiolkas and he is best known for his two recent novels The Slap and Barracuda. Merciless Gods is his first collection of short stories and deals mainly with sexuality, family and identity.Author of six novels, Christos Tsiolkas was born in 1965 to Greek immigrant parents. Reading through his novels you quickly get the sense of what it must have been like growing up in suburbia as a Greek immigrant and a homosexual. He likes to explore these themes constantly and you get an idea of just how backwards people’s thinking can be. Then with his breakout novel The Slap, he challenged everyone’s thoughts, tapping into the universal dilemma around discipline and child-rearing.Merciless Gods seems to be more of a “return to his roots” collection of short stories, which shares similarities with first novel Loaded at any of his other. There is this whole theme about social and personal struggle that play out within these stories. I am impressed with the way Tsiolkas challenges people’s views; particularly when it comes to sexuality and immigrants. There was a particular story that he wrote in Greek and then translated into English that was very powerful.Christos Tsiolkas has officially become an ‘auto-buy’ author for me now and I will have to read the rest of his backlist sometime soon. Merciless Gods is hard-hitting and not for the faint of heart, he is pushing the boundaries but he does this really well. I am not sure when these stories were originally written, I think that will be interesting to know. However if you have never read this great Australian author, this is probably not the best place to start. Maybe begin with The Slap or Barracuda before working your way up to Loaded and Merciless Gods.This review originally appeared on my blog:

  • Stephen Elliott
    2019-03-10 09:57

    Beautiful short stories filled with desire, love and impure thoughts. Tsiolkas pushes boundaries here with sometimes perverse and taboo tales of family love. The protagonists in each tale are so diverse and portrayed in such rich detail yet there's a self-identifying claim to every one. Essential reading.

  • Dave
    2019-02-23 16:03

    The usual blistering Tsiolkas style, sometimes a bit much though. There's a fine line between profundity and misanthropy but Merciless Gods doesn't quite know what side it's on. Still, a very worthy read.

  • Renita D'Silva
    2019-02-26 11:38

    Acutely observed, sharp stories. Succinct snapshots into ordinary and extra-ordinary lives.

  • Paola
    2019-03-02 11:56

    Collection of short stories, with some themes resurfacing throughout, including being an immigrant/outsider, homosexual sex (with its mechanics described to the limit of boredom), comparisons between the sparseness of Australia and the compactness of the rest of the world.The substance not matching the writing quality, these vignettes sometimes trying too hard to show how the description of trivial details can become great literature. As others reviews have noted, by the end I had had quite enough.

  • Deanne
    2019-02-27 15:44

    I have been a real fan of Christos Tsiolkas who writes with a great insight and clarity into complex and difficult social issues. I read 'The Slap' - such a strong and powerful novel dealing with controversial social mechanisms which spiral out of control as a result of a child being slapped at a family BBQ. 'Barracuda' also explored some confronting issues including racial prejudice, alcohol fuelled violence and the seeking of retribution. I marvelled at both these books. This latest work by Tsiolkas, 'Merciless Gods' is a compilation of short stories most of which I found to be incredibly shocking. They are gritty but to the extent that when read together their themes of racial prejudice, violence, homosexual violence, pornography and drug addiction provide for some very heavy intense reading. Tsolkas is a writer who likes to pursue edgy issues. This was done with mastery in his previous 2 novels because maybe in a novel, there is of course adequate time for character development and time to go on a long journey with the characters. In the short story format there is little time to get to understand and empathise with the motivations of the characters and so the controversial, difficult issues in the short stories become the main component and not the people. To me this compliation of short stories was altogether too confronting and disturbing and I must admit I was pleased to turn the last page.

  • Helen Stasa
    2019-03-04 09:06

    I've got to admit, I found this work disappointing. I am a great admirer of Tsiolkas' style and the rawness of his writing. But I felt that this collection of stories was repetitive and tedious, particularly with the sex scenes and repeated references to the migrant experience. And does every single story need to have a scene where one of the key characters pauses, and smokes a cigarette? After a while, it fails to have any uniqueness, and just looks like a writer who has run out of ideas. This is a shame, as Tsiolkas has considerable talent.

  • Paul Hancock
    2019-03-08 14:51

    "Merciless Gods" by Christos Tsiolkas is a series of short stories, some quite confronting. In them Tsiolkas deals with issues concerning being a Greek Australian, relationships with lovers, friends and with parents and their mortality. Some might be offended by his particularly frank depictions of sex, particularly gay sex, but that is part and parcel of who he is. The stories revealing the heartache of dealing with a parent with dementia are especially affecting. The writing is masterful and at times quite brutal, as befitting the title. Well worth a read.

  • Dylan Goddard
    2019-03-10 13:54

    Visceral, dark, brutal. Tsiolkas presents story and character with polish and skill, yet with the blunt power of a sledgehammer. At times heartening, at others sickening, but all the while engaging.

  • Jacqui Lademann
    2019-03-02 17:06

    One of the most exciting and stunning pieces of writing I've read this year.

  • Jane Gregg
    2019-03-15 12:46

    Yeah but no. Like beating your head against the same brick wall for eight hours, though in a literate, well written way. Relentless.

  • Jillwilson
    2019-02-20 15:55

    Scene 1INT. A SMALL ROOM EQUIPPED WITH AN AGEING COMPUTER, A SHELF WITH DICTIONARIES AND A THESAURUS. THERE IS AN OLD FILING CABINET IN THE CORNER AND A POSTER ON THE WALL ADVERTISING A LITTLE-KNOWN BAND THAT IS PLAYING IN A BRUNSWICK PUB. THE WRITER IS SEATED ON AN OFFICE CHAIR THAT HAS SEEN BETTER DAYS. Camera shot moves from doorway to computer screen. Focusses on email.From: To: Date: Several months before Christmas 2014 Subject: New novel scheduling Dear etc etcJust had a meeting with our production team and we need to get a heads-up on when that next book’s going to hit the deck here. Can you let me know how it’s going. We’re very excited – the focus you indicated (‘gay male couple adopt baby from India and fight for same sex marriage with Slumdog Millionaire subtheme’) fits right into the current zeitgeist.RegardsEtc etcINT. CAMERA FOCUSES ON WRITER WITH WORRIED LOOK ON FACE. THE DESK IS SURROUNDED BY BALLED UP PAPER.The camera focuses back onto the computer screen.From: To: Date: One month later Subject: URGENT - New novel scheduling Dear etc etcWe really need to know ASAP when we’re going to get the next book. I’ll call you.INT. CAMERA FOCUSES ON WRITER, HEAD SLUMPED IN HANDS. THE DESK IS SURROUNDED BY EVEN MORE BALLED UP PAPER. THERE IS A SMALL TOWER OF RED BULL CANS IN THE CORNER AND A HALF EMPTY WHISKY BOTTLE. SEVERAL USED COFFEE CUPS CLUTTER THE DESK.The camera focuses back onto the computer screen. From: To: Date: One week later Subject: Breach of contract Dear etc etcContractually you have agreed to provide us with a final manuscript by . We have paid you a considerable advance for this work. Unless we receive a MS within 5 working days, we will be unable to distribute the book in time for the Christmas season. You appear to be avoiding our calls. INT. WRITER IS SHOWN AT THE WINDOW LOOKING FROM THE FIRST FLOOR WHERE THE OFFICE IS LOACTED INTO A BUSY TWO-LANE STREET OF SHOPS AND MIDDLE EASTERN CAFES. THE CAMERA FOLLOWS HIS GAZE TO TWO WOMEN IN HIJABS, A GROUP OF OLD MEN SEATED OUTSIDE A CAFÉ AND THE TRAM RUMBLING DOWN THE STREET WHICH IS CONGESTED WITH CARS AND CYCLISTS. THE WRITER SIGHS, LIGHTS A CIGARETTE AND BLOWS SMOKE OUT OF THE OPEN WINDOW. HE TURNS FROM THE WINDOW TO THE FILING CABINET AND BEGINS RUMMAGING THROUGH THE BOTTOM DRAWER. SOMETIME LATER HE EMERGES TRIUMPHANT HOLDING A FLOPPY DISC IN HIS HAND. (Note to Art Director – while technically time-wise, this should really be a hard floppy disc, we like the irony of it being one of those really early really floppy discs. We also need a clue that spring is coming. Woman carrying daffodils?) Scene 2INT. SAME OFFICE, NOW STRIPPED OF ALL DETRITUS AND LOOKING SPARTAN AND ORDERLY. COMPUTER IS OFF. WRITER IS SEEN BACK TO CAMERA ON THE PHONE.AgentMate, I’ve had another call from him. They’regoingmental. You’vegotta have something. We promised them abook.Writer It’s OK – I’ve got it sorted.AgentWhat… you’ve finished thebook?WriterNo mate . Am totally stuck – What was I thinking? The gay marriage, baby thing – some kind of weird Odd Couple schtick? The Slap gone left field? Crazy. Noooo…. I remembered all those stories I’ve written – you know – I did a piece for that collection Brothers and Sisters. And there’s stuff from Meanjin I think…Agent yeah! I remember – a man goes to the funeral of his gay brother – there’s hippies and. Would’ve made a good novel.WriterThat’s the one. I’ve chucked in another one that started life as a novel – it’s the one that I think should be the title story – Merciless Gods. And I’ve written one in Greek and translated it back into English so there’s a slight discordance. I’ve got 20 year’s worth of stories. They go back to the early 90s.AgentMate, I don’t want to rain on your parade but what Iremember of your short stories – they’re prettyfull-on mate, a lot’veviolent sex, a lot’vedrugs,full on, mate. How would they work together in one book. It’d befull on…. Like ‘Loaded’ on speed.WriterWe need a book.AgentI know – we can get them to make a reallybeautiful cover – go with the gods riff. Get all those ‘ladeez’ bookclubs in with aGreek god on thecover. ***************************************************************************OK, so maybe it wasn’t like that but as one of the ladeez in my bookclub said, the stories together have an impact that would not have been the case when read singly as part of other collections. Combined, these stories trawl through the darker side of life. It’s a tough read and the quality is quite uneven – due perhaps to the fact that the stories were written over two decades. David Marr said of Tsiolkas “He talks quietly and writes loud,” and I think this is true.What I think the book is lacking (in comparison to how other recent work) is an injection of tenderness that mediates the brutality of many of the scenes. In The Slap, the young characters and the older Greek man are treated gently as is the main character in Barracuda (despite his complexities). It’s rare in this collection to feel this (the story about the man whose father is in a nursing home is perhaps an exception).A lot of the stories explore the dysfunctionality of families and relationships with fathers. There is a significant undercurrent of shame running through the book – it perhaps one of the propellants for the brutal sex acts and drug use that pervade many stories. I read an article about Tsiolkis about his earlier work which included the following: “His first novel, Loaded, about a Greek boy rebelling against the traditional mores of his family and discovering his sexuality, was made into an extremely graphic movie called Head On. The author’s description of taking his mother to see it was very moving. She watched the screen, unflinching, he said, and afterwards vanished into the bathroom to emerge with red eyes. Together, they went to a pub to “get hammered” and there, armed only with the “Greek of a young boy” and her imperfect English, they had bared their souls to each other. There are very few times in which we and our parents stand naked before each other and speak the truth, he said, and this had been one of them.” (’s stuff in here that is a baring of the soul and it’s not all pleasant.The stories that I thought were particularly strong include the first one ‘Merciless Gods’ – about a party where things go wrong for a group of friends. (Note to Tsiolkas – he never convinces me that has a handle on what women are like and the incident where the wife takes revenge by shitting on a computer keyboard is not convincing – women shit metaphorically, not literally. This is what a boy would do.) There is story set in a prison that is violent and mesmerizing at the same time. ‘Porn 2’ –which also contains elements of tenderness despite the violence of the sex and power relationships – is also a compelling read. Most of the bookclub liked the story titled ‘Civil War’ – a surreal road trip through the heart of redneck Australia.In the same article I read about Tsiolkas he said "Those are the sorts of questions I want to consider: how do we become that which we fear and detest, how do we acquiesce? I put that in my writing but I also see it as a constant challenge in my life." Put simply, it's not simple to be human. "All good art knows that," he says. "The struggle to be good is hourly, daily, that's what I'm so conscious of - in my writing and also in my life." This exploration is very central to this collection.I found the collection relentless in tone and a bit like being hit over the head with a shovel. The best stories are very good, but it’s an uneven collection.

  • Shannon (Giraffe Days)
    2019-03-15 09:54

    As I read Tsiolkas' first published collection of short stories, I couldn't help but think that here, here, is a true artiste of human nature in all its glorious and tawdry flaws. He strips away the veneers we use so constantly - veneers of civilisation and humanity and tolerance - and puts our real selves up on display. You don't have to identify with any of his characters to connect with them, or recognise them. It's not about you, the reader, in a narcissistic way; it's about humanity and all its bullshit. Ironically, once stripped of the façade of gentility, what's left is yet another layer of bullshit.Take Vince in the title story, "Merciless Gods". This is a story about stories, as a group of friends share anecdotes of when they took revenge. Vince's story leaves the others shocked and sickened, and it's hard to tell whether he's even telling the truth or not. If he is, he's a bastard. If he isn't, he's still a bastard. In "Petals", we are deep within the twisted consciousness of a prison inmate, homesick for Greece, who brings us right into his hell of a life with authentically bad grammar. He is a character who is instantly believable, deeply flawed, full of 'greys' and ultimately more than a bit scary. There's the story of a young man with a girlfriend who lets himself get pulled into a relationship with another man who uses him for sex, money and to enable his drinking habit, who is violent and a rapist, in "Jessica Lange in Frances". Life is a journey, the old cliché says, but what's missing are the adjectives: violent, brutal, dirty, rich, textured, unpleasant, joyous, disgusting, frightening, paralysing. Merciless Gods has its high moments, but mostly it descends into the underbelly of humanity, laying it all bare without shame, apology or censorship. A few stories touch upon Indigenous issues, like "Civil War" which, scarily, tells us that there are people in Australia stockpiling weapons for some fantastical war against the Aborigines (who are, of course, simply living off welfare etc. etc.), in which they will be wiped out, once and for all. "There's gonna have to be a war soon in this country."I look up at him and he's glancing over at me."People are getting ready," he continues, "arming themselves. And who can blame them? The fucking government is in cahoots with the niggers, giving them all this land, paying them money so they can get drunk and piss it all away." He snorts angrily and accelerates. I offer neither resistance to nor approval of what he is saying. "Do you know those bastards get money to send their kids to school? And what do the parents do with all that money? Drink it or spend it on drugs. The pricks up in Canberra keep giving them our money, buying them houses and cars." He is animated now, anger and passion softening the hard surfaces of his skin, making him seem younger. "It's our money that pays for all those gifts to the bloody blackfella while he sits on his lazy arse and sells his kids and wife for extra cash. They're cunning bastards. No natural intelligence at all, just animal cunning." He spits out this last insult. "They know how to use the system. But the bastards are making use of my taxes to live the good life." [pp.232-3]What's especially frightening about this is just how prevalent this attitude is in Australian society. In certain parts of the country - Queensland, the Northern Territory, and Western Australia especially, where "Civil War" is set - this is the common, mainstream attitude and perspective. You'll find it in other places, too, including my own state, Tasmania. We live in a deeply racist land and have done little about it. Most people don't even bother to hide it.It would be a shame to be turned off by the strong language, the gruesome scenes of rape, pornography and other sexual acts, as well as the subject matter explored here. Personally, I like confronting stories: I like to have my world shaken up by fiction and non-fiction, along with documentaries, though in order to live my life I have to read the fun stuff too. It's important not to shy away from the truths of our world, or the realistic flaws of human nature. It's also important to, in a way, 'bear witness', to hear and listen and think about and feel, because while Merciless Gods may be fiction, it carries that stamp of 'gritty realism' and the bone-deep knowledge that people have lived this, and more, all the time. These are stories that can deliver a punch to the gut, have you chewing your fingernails in suspense, and even bring out a tissue or two. Tsiolkas isn't shy of bringing you into this world, far from a cozy middle-class existence. His ability to create scenes, characters and explore, with subtlety, hard-hitting contemporary issues is his greatest strength. I saw that in Barracuda and I see it even more here, in these stories. What saves it from being downright depressing is that sense of his character's fragile, vulnerable quest for beauty in this grim world, that even a wart on a toad can be loveable because it's your toad - like the mother in "The Hair of the Dog", or the father-son relationship in "Genetic Material". Not all the stories are in-your-face or contain vulgarity, or are about homosexuality, violence, pornography. The married couple in "Tourists" feel so familiar because they are so vividly, realistically drawn, and the tense mother-son relationship in "Sticks, Stones" makes me wonder what my own little boy will put me through when he's a teenager - and how I'll react. (On a side note, my son, three years old, found the cover of this book quite scary.)You never know what one of these stories will bring you, or where it will take you. Each is a surprise, and each is subtle, full of nuance and shades of grey. Tsiolkas' raw and insightful examination of our flawed psyches and troubled relationships is, strangely, a joy to read, not least because of the skill and craftsmanship he brings to each tale. Truly Tsiolkas has become one of Australia's truly great writers for the 21st century.

  • Mario
    2019-02-26 16:36

    It's difficult to rate a collection of short stories. Many were quite moving, my favourite among them 'Saturn Return'.

  • Karly
    2019-03-12 13:44

    This is one of the most visceral books I have ever read. There's lots of bodily fluid getting around, some form of liquid in pretty much every story. It's not for the prudish. After reading it I may fall into that category. I had to skin some bits!I think this is incredibly well crafted in terms of character development and sense of place, particularly as this is a collection of short stories and I still feel Tsiolkas is an incredibly important contemporary author. I just wanted there to be some characters that weren't completely messed up. Maybe I should just read it and be grateful for my functional life.

  • Sonia Nair
    2019-03-17 12:49

    Dark and unsettling, Christos Tsiolkas’ short story collection Merciless Gods veers into the deepest recesses of human behaviour as it tackles the downfall of relationships, fractured familial ties, impenetrable bonds pushed to their limits, and the ability of humans to inflict upon one another unfathomable amounts of pain and suffering. Read the rest of my review on ArtsHub:

  • Tiffany
    2019-03-11 13:44

    It's difficult to give a single rating to a collection of stories. Some were the sort of raw genius I've come to expect from the author of The Slap and Barracuda, two books I really admired. Other stories were truly awful. So angry, violent and hateful. I suspect my reaction says more about me than it does about the author. But I just couldn't bring myself to give the collection higher than a two star rating because of these angry, sex and drug-filled nightmares. A very clever author and I'll be keen to read more of his novels in future, but I'll be steering clear of his shorter works.

  • Inga Springe
    2019-03-11 11:55

    Ļoti, ļoti labi uzrakstīta grāmata. Sen nebiju baudījusi tik labu literāro valodu, gan krāšņa, gan bagāta, gan viegli uztverama.Vienlaikus saturs ir skaudrs, pat nedaudz depresīvs par cilvēka iekšējo konfliktu, konfliktu ar apkārtējiem, ģimeni, savu vecumu. Dominē geju attiecības, bet vienlaikus grāmata nav par gejiem, bet gan dzīves esenci kopumā. Tuvākajā laikā neko līdzīgu negribētu lasīt, bet šī bija forša bauda uz pāris dienām.

  • Eva Saris
    2019-03-04 14:04

    A collection of short stories which are very cleverly written. All elements of life's emotions are experienced in each story whether it be love, death, family, sex etc. Some stories may be confronting even shocking for some. Same sex relationships dominate the stories and scenes are quite explicit and sometimes brutal. It was interesting to feel drawn into stories where the settings such as suburb and era's were familiar. Definitely not for the faint hearted.

  • Emma Balkin
    2019-03-11 16:39

    Another of Tsiolkas' confronting tomes. The subject matter was so strong that I felt that he was beating me around the head with it. It was certainly eye-opening and not something I'd naturally seek out. Nevertheless, I could not stop reading it. This writing is irresistible. A collection of short stories. A book that scares me.

  • Laurena
    2019-02-27 12:52

    The writing was good, some of the stories were thought provoking, and I could relate to some of the cultural family issues. However, I found the sex, violence and brutality in the book off-putting and over-the-top. Yes, I finished it, but wished I didn't. Not one I will be recommending.

  • Benjamin Farr
    2019-02-22 15:59

    I found this book to be enjoyable - I really like Christos Tsiolkas and he hasn’t disappointed with this series of short stories.I didn’t find the stories "confronting" or “shocking” as some have claimed in their reviews. The stories are real, raw and beautifully written.Classic Tsiolkas.