The Book: Loaded

Loaded, novel

Everybody read gay Australian Christos Tsiolkas’s The Slap (apparently), which was long-listed for the Man Booker in 2009 – well this is his debut novel Loaded, an account of 19-year-old Ari, a Greek-Australian teenager who is struggling to come to terms with his homosexuality, and which is getting a second shot at the Book Hit Parade because, well, publishers are wily like that. Controversial (hooray!), much like The Slap (hooray!), Loaded shows the angst of Ari (unemployed, boyfriendless, lady-less, hardly any plans for the future) trying to balance fitting in with his surroundings with wanting to trash them: on the one hand you have the Greek heritage, on the other a hedonistic and drug-fuelled lifestyle (isn’t that Mykonos?) You might know the 1998 film adaptation Head On (well, it did have a particularly graphic masturbation scene, which might stick in the memory) but you should definitely try the book. Maybe on a beach. In Mykonos. When in, erm, Rome and all that…

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