An Ode to Boyhood and Rage

Max Porter in conversation with Mattis Øybø

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Organised byLitteraturhuset

Max Porter in conversation with Mattis Øybø

The year is 1995, and 16 year old Shy is sneaking out of the rural boarding school for “difficult” boys, named “Last Chance”. A long history of petty crime, expulsions and frustrated family members has brought him here, but now it is all soon over. With a spliff in his pocket and his Walkman loaded with his drum ‘n’ bass favourites, he’s ready. His rucksack is filled with rocks, and his head is swimming with memories of all his failures and times he fucked it up.

Shy is a compositionally ambitious and lyrical character study with troubled youth as its subject. Through frequent flashbacks and interjections, Shy provides us with glimpses of a difficult childhood leading to a young man at the verge of self-annihilation. Shy is a tender story of depression and not being able to fit in, told with great compassion and nuance. At the same time, the novel is a fervent ode to the outsiders of the 90s and to the culture and music that embraced them, those who no one else wanted.

Max Porter is a British author and editor at the publishing house Granta. With his experimental and innovative novels, in particular Grief Is the Thing with Feathers, he has established himself as one of his generation’s most exciting voices and acquired a large readership among critics and with the general public. Even other writers like Douglas Stuart, PJ Harvey and George Saunders have expressed their admiration for Porter and his trilogy of novels on boyhood, which Shy now completes.

Another writer who has followed Porter’s career with curiosity and excitement is Norwegian author and editor at Tiden, Mattis Øybø. He will meet Porter for a conversation on Shy, masculinity and how best to bring the outsiders back in.

The conversation will be in English

Litteraturhuset Berner (u. et) In English

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