Tom McCarthy: C is not historical fiction
6th August 2010
Tom McCarthy does not consider his Man Booker Prize 2010
longlisted novel C
to be historical fiction.
In an interview with the New Statesman, the author
claimed that the book is not a historical novel as, even though it
is set in Edwardian-era Europe, it deals with timeless themes and
is not merely a study of that particular point in time.
He continued: 'I'm more interested in something that's at the
same time very contemporary and very ancient, which is the
relationship between language and technology and the human
McCarthy admitted that he took a certain amount of inspiration
from the avant-garde movement when writing C, but
suggested that too many modern novels are given the avant-garde
label if they are different from typical 'middlebrow' fiction.
The author also told the magazine that he believes British
writing 'just peters out' after greats such as
Daniel Defoe and
Charles Dickens - but disclosed that he considers
J.G. Ballard to be a 'genius'.
In being included on this year's Man Booker longlist, C
is competing against works including
Peter Carey's Parrot
and Olivier in America, The
Christos Tsiolkas and
Helen Dunmore's The