Praise for Declan Burke: “Burke shows again that he’s not just a comic genius, but also a fine dramatic writer and storyteller.” – Booklist. “Proust meets Chandler over a pint of Guinness.” – Spectator. “Among the most memorable books of the year, of any genre.” – Sunday Times. “A hardboiled delight.” – Guardian. “Imagine Donald Westlake and Richard Stark collaborating on a screwball noir.” – Kirkus Reviews. “A cross between Raymond Chandler and Flann O’Brien.” – John Banville.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Declan Hughes: Must He Throw This Filth At His Kids?

Rachel Petzold was kind enough to review Declan Hughes’ latest offering, ALL THE DEAD VOICES, over at The Feminist Review. She didn’t like the book, which is fair enough, because we’re all entitled to an opinion, especially feminists. The review concludes thusly:
“Declan Hughes is a Shamus Award-winning author, a husband, and a father of two girls. I hope he never lets them read his work.”
  Now, the ‘Shamus Award-winning author’ bit I get, but I’m not entirely sure what Declan Hughes’ marital status, or his being a dad to two girls, has to do with the quality or otherwise of the novel. Besides, given that the two young ladies in question will very probably grow up to become exemplary feminists, how the hell is Declan Hughes supposed to stop them from doing whatever they want to do, reading his very fine novels included?
  Ladies, I know you’re out there. I’d very much appreciate your thoughts on this matter.


bookwitch said...

I'm no lady, but...

At some point they will want to read them, unless reading Dad's books is so uncool that they won't. Look at the young Miss McKinty.

How do you feel about Princess L reading them? If against, put the book on the coffee table and enthuse about how good it is and suggest she tries it. She won't. If you are for, then you hide it somewhere and she'll go and get it out.

Stupid woman.

Declan Burke said...

Ms Witch - There's NO WAY I'm letting my daughter read ANY of Declan Hughes' books. I don't care how good they are ...

Erm, that was what you asked, right?

Cheers, Dec

John McFetridge said...

I like the "transition team," view of parenting. Our job is to go from making all the decisions for our kids to making none of the decisions.

We mess up a lot, allow some things in too soon some things too late.

As for All the Dead Voices there are some very real characters in there that do many things real people do. Not all of them good things.

So, it adds up to a very good book.

bookwitch said...

Yep, it was. Hypocrite!

I think what that woman said is that fathers of daughters should stick to writing sweet and innocent books. So you may want to reconsider.

sex scenes at starbucks said...

Huh. Haven't read the book. I write some nasty shit, to put it lightly. My kids won't read it until they're of an age to decide.

By that time I'm sure it'll be way out of print or uncool or both.

Declan Burke said...

It's early days yet, given that she's only 18 months or so, but I'm kind of guessing (and hoping, if I'm honest) that my little girl will grow up to be the kind of woman who will tell her father (and pretty much everyone else) to take a running jump if he tells her what she can or can't read, or can and can't do.

Ideologies are fine and dandy-o (feminism, Marxism, capitalism, et al) in theory, they just never seem to work in practice. People are just too messy.

Cheers, Dec

Dana King said...

The reviewer missed the boat entirely. She made it sound like Loy is an Irish Mike Hammer. I guess The Feminist Review only grades books based on their feminist acceptability, which seems to be all men are shits, and women their oppressed chattels. Or something like that.