Other Free Encyclopedias » Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern Fiction » Books & Authors: Award-Winning Fiction (Sc-Tr)

Smith, Zadie

novel british characters

(British, 1975– )

Zadie Smith's first novel White Teeth (Whitbread First Novel Prize) was the fiction sensation of 2000 in the UK. How could it not have been? With its modishly magical realist manner, its self-consciously Dickensian plot and characters, its safely soft-centred take on fifty years of often bitter multi-cultural relations in the UK and its photo of its drop-dead gorgeous young, black author on the back? The problem for the cynically inclined is that it's also rather a good book: frequently funny, holding the attention more or less throughout and, quite remarkable in any British novel let alone a first, going for broke with big characters and big themes on a big historical canvas. Her second novel The Autograph Man (2002) had a more mixed reception so the third, as ever, will be the test.

Charles Dickens, Salman Rushdie, Samuel Selvon  MH

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