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RRP: GBP£ 9.99
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This title is available for academic inspection (paperback only).
ISBN: 978 1 784104 12 2
Categories: 21st Century, British, First Collections, Women
Imprint: Carcanet Poetry
Published: September 2017
216 x 135 x 8 mm
Publisher: Carcanet Press
Also available in: eBook (Kindle), eBook (EPUB), eBook (PDF)
Digital access available through Exact Editions
Smoothie is Claudine Toutoungi’s debut collection of poems. It takes a tender, exuberant and deliciously dark look at our desire to be heard, whatever the cost; a desire that can be treacherous, comical and sometimes – often enough to fend off despair – fulfilled. Smoothie plots the wayward wanderings of a beguiling cast of misfits – hotel eavesdroppers, city interlopers, lone wolves, phantom bird-watchers, disaffected language robots and triumphant piano-swallowers – as they try to express themselves. The poems are candid without being confessional: the poet’s ‘I’ encompasses the reader. Language’s smooth surface bubbles up as Toutoungi’s characters reveal their peculiarly twenty-first-century disorientations, riffing off loneliness, authenticity and heartbreak as they go.
'One way of judging a book is by whether it stays with you after you've read it. This is a book that does. Perhaps that's because it's peculiarly vivid. Perhaps it's because it has genuine wit, or because of its lightness of touch, or its sophistication or inventiveness, or the rigour of the logic that holds the poems together. But actually I think it's because it also has a kind of unafraid honesty, a quality completely unrelated to the skill of writing, but so crucial to the best poetry.'
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