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Neil Bartlett (1) (1958–)

Autor(a) de Ready to Catch Him Should He Fall

Para outros autores com o nome Neil Bartlett, ver a página de desambiguação.

24+ Works 972 Membros 29 Críticas 1 Favorited

About the Author

Image credit: Courtesy of Serpent's Tail Press

Obras por Neil Bartlett

Ready to Catch Him Should He Fall (1990) 327 exemplares
Mr Clive and Mr Page (1996) 210 exemplares
Skin Lane (2007) 126 exemplares
Queer British Art: 1867-1967 (2017) — Contribuidor — 54 exemplares
The Disappearance Boy (2014) 35 exemplares
Gay Plays: Four (1990) — Contribuidor — 21 exemplares
Address Book (2021) 21 exemplares
A Picture of Dorian Gray (2012) 8 exemplares
In Extremis (2000) 7 exemplares
Queer Voices (2012) 6 exemplares
The Girl I Left Behind Me (2011) 4 exemplares

Associated Works

The Faber Book of Gay Short Fiction (1992) — Contribuidor — 321 exemplares
The Penguin Book of Gay Short Stories (1994) — Contribuidor — 315 exemplares
The Mammoth Book of Gay Short Stories (1997) — Contribuidor — 100 exemplares
The Heart in Exile (1953) — Introdução, algumas edições83 exemplares
The Mammoth Book of Gay Erotica (1997) — Contribuidor — 73 exemplares
Gay Shame (2009) — Contribuidor — 51 exemplares


Conhecimento Comum



A dexterous collection of Queer stories which shift tone, momentum, era, energy. Each linked to a (mostly different) address, and always different character/s.

From the postscript it appears these stories have strong links to real people, who Bartlett has held up a mirror to capture their variety, similarity, humanity.

About the author, who may be less known in the US/Canada:


Some publications have described this as a novel (as they fear short stories don't sell), it is not. I love short stories, but if I want a novel, I am disappointed if I find them.… (mais)
1 vote
Caroline_McElwee | Dec 17, 2021 |
I keep finding myself awed by Neil Bartlett's mastery over the ever-evolving narrative found in his work. "Mr Clive and Mr Page" is mysterious, tender, gripping and oddly playful; though, of course, despair is the emotion that haunts every page. It's dissected by the narrator and split unevenly between the two protagonists. Moreover, the emotion is heightened by the style Bartlett uses to carry out the procedure. It mimics the indistinctness of memory, as well as the fretful way in which we yearn to gather the scraps of a dream shortly after waking up. But as more and more time passes, logic begins to waver, and the more guarded the person recounting the dream seems. What an artistic achievement!… (mais)
Berry1 | 4 outras críticas | Nov 7, 2021 |
Looking at some of the less than flattering reviews, it's clear that some readers are searching for realism in a work that is not only idealistic, but tells a fairy tale of mythical proportions.

It seems futile to scour the pages for "truth" in a work that quotes Herman Melville's reflection on the verity of writing, "I never used to believe what I read, but only thought it very strange, and a good deal too strange to be altogether true; though I never thought the man who wrote the book meant to tell lies". It also seems exhausting to cling to a world built around the periphery of one's own "truth". Sadly, the fact that some readers engage in these activities means that they end up overlooking the meaty substance buried within Bartlett's prose.

Through its restless need to provoke, seduce, baffle and embolden, Bartlett's strong writing gives hope to the oppressed. This includes both the gay men within the story, who fear the symbolism of the knife poised to slash their faces open in the night, and those moving about the "real" world, filled with similar acts of loathing and violence.

In this respect, the novel possesses a remarkably positive tone, taking on the resonance of a near-deafening battle cry. This is incredibly rare for books that fall in the "gay literature" category. To be able to transcend the margins of the victim narrative, Bartlett employs numerous tropes. These serve to achieve a few things at once: thicken the structure of the central fairy tale, appeal to a collective consciousness and communicate with those, who are familiar with the inner-workings of the discussed scene. In doing so, these symbols manage not to stray far from the "real" gay world, which is often reduced to a realm of walking clichés by those, who aim to undercut its unique struggles and attributes.

Bartlett's work operates as a myth, and this key quality might make it a somewhat challenging read for those, who are used to the logic that rules novelisations, for example. This is also the crucial difference between fiction and literature. Those used to the subversive tools of the latter appreciate writing for its artistic value, and can spot the devices used to carve lyrical landscapes. It's along these planes that readers' perceptions are challenged.

The novel toys with our understanding of what is real and what must remain indefinite. It takes pleasure in storing its morals beneath images, hiding thick emotions between grappling hands and tear-stained cheeks. For all its surreal plot points and political endeavours, the story is incredibly tender and relatable, as evidenced by the characters' struggle to articulate the depths of their love.

Overall, "Ready to Catch Him Should He Fall" is a stupendous, thought-provoking novel that celebrates not only the elasticity of the mind, but the beauty of transitory feelings.
… (mais)
1 vote
Berry1 | 4 outras críticas | Nov 7, 2021 |
This is a beautiful, haunting play. Most of its allure comes from the characters' inability to articulate their emotions; an impotence that draws a distinct boundary between us and the men. This separation is only heightened by the active role that the split versions of A and B take on. We're not only presented with the young and old embodiment of a single spirit, but also the assistants, who serve as physical reminders of the men's stubborn reliance on fading memory and silence.

Our sense of despair rises as the minutes continue to tick away, signalling the impending end of a shared life, as well as the death of expression. It's during these moments that we experience the tender violence of passing time, which leaves us gaping into space as we realise how much of Old B's suffering has come to rest on our shoulders. And we see that, using various mechanisms of narration, Bartlett has injected into us doses of the dread that's eating A and B alive.

Aside from the superb writing and subtlety of reference within the story, Bartlett creates a dynamic, visual experience. Working only with the text, I was able to lose myself in the switching images. Meanwhile, I found myself helpless against the dialogue taking place not so much between A and B, as through them. All in all, I've read a few plays in my life, but this one was by far one of the most captivating.
… (mais)
Berry1 | Nov 7, 2021 |



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