Beautifully written, extraordinarily powerful. The ultimate read for lovers the world over!
Forced from their collective comfort zone, all three members of Martin’s family come face to face with the realities that underpin their urbane way of life. Each is faced with a paradox that will test their belief in themselves and their image of the tolerant, liberal society they believe they inhabit.
An epic in miniature, The Jealous Flock takes readers from the cloistered air of Professional London through the harsh realities of the Middle East and on to the culture war simmering beneath the surface in Australia.
Through their interwoven narratives each character tries to grapple with change as they question their authenticity and value as individuals amidst The Jealous Flock.
Inviting us to look past the hubbub of modern day living and start listening to each other, The Jealous Flock proves a powerful debut for Borodin whilst rightly raising high expectations of things to come. Eschewing a traditional narrative structure it’s admirably adventurous as we see the lives of his characters through an ever-widening lens. It’s gripping, focused and makes us want to turn the pages but most importantly it’s grounded in the real world. With an acerbic pen and a keen eye for nuance, his characters are wholly mesmerising, each one instantly coming into focus as multiple story threads come together. It’s difficult to explore the depth of character and relationships in a novella but here Borodin strikes an equitable balance through determined dialogue and widely contrasting backdrops. Indeed, a longer work might have led to complicated subplots but it’s in Borodin’s spare lapidary details that we find some of his most poignant moments.
A powerful debut that introduces an original and compelling literary voice, The Jealous Flock bodes well for Borodin and promises much for his future releases. It is recommended without reservation.
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Ashley comes from a poor, Fundamentalist background so it seems natural that he would be drawn to write about experiences similar to his own in contemporary fiction.
He tends to wax Contrarian, and possibly due in part to his Autism (undiagnosed until late in life) his writing tends to dispense with the usual hand-holding of many modern authors and gets right to the cerebral matter.
He's not really influenced by anyone but if pressed to answer this, of all demeaning questions, he will point you in the direction of authors such as: Iris Murdoch, Aldous Huxley, Charles Bukowski, John Wyndham.