Danuta Kean interviews Lisa Blower for this season’s Mslexia, in their Debut Interview slot. She writes, within the two page spread:
“A bright, witty woman, Blower wears her academic credentials lightly: she has a PhD and lectured in Creative Writing at Bangor University. Sitting Ducks was written out of her frustration at never hearing working-class voices, like her own, in fiction.’It is about telling the stories of people that wouldn’t otherwise be told,’ she explains.’These are working- class families trying to exist on even less than before.’
Exploitation of the poor should infuriate, but Blower handles her rage deftly. The novel is not a polemic. A fan of Alan Bennett, she has the same ear for dialogue and characters that are sympathetic, human and funny, but not laughable. Tory councillor Roy Dingwall is described with a precision that nails his vanity and corruption and draws a wry smile; in one scene an attempt at seduction is relayed with a deadpan eye for detail that makes the reader chuckle with embarrassment and pity.”
Danuta Kean is Books Editor of Mslexia and a respected publishing expert and journalist. Her work appears regularly in national newspapers, including the Financial Times and Independent on Sunday. She is a regular speaker at festivals, interviewing authors and revealing the inner workings of the book trade.