Thursday, 16 August 2012

Reality in Fiction

I'm probably alone in this, but I find it disturbing when a story is written as though it were a biography.  There is so much authority given to the characters and their actions when the story is apparently real.  Reading The Cat's Table this week, I was struck by this very strongly - all the events and characters are written with the "colour" of memoir, as stated by the author.  So I asked myself - do people really behave, think, act like this?  Maybe.  Authors are often very good at reading people, and transcribing what they see around them into the characters they create.  But do we put too much faith into this reinterpretation of people, so that we start to read art into reality as well.  I suppose this is one of those all time questions - how much does art influence life and how much does is life reflected in art.  I suppose I don't like to be so subtly influenced in my understanding - I want things real or not real.
Still, if you're looking for something like The Cat's Table, that is fictional but 'real' in its expression, choose Biographical Fiction on

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