Christos Tsiolkas: Barracuda
Christos Tsiolkas has long been one of Australia’s most glittering literary treasures – and thanks to the success of his bestselling barbecue-stopper The Slap, he’s now a household name. In his sixth novel, Barracuda, Tsiolkas once again holds up a mirror to the deepest insecurities and most dearly held dreams of middle class Australia.
Tsiolkas delivers a searing exploration of failure, and how to come back from it — on the back of his greatest literary success.
Join our foremost chronicler of contemporary Melbourne for a typically tender and coruscating look at how we live now. In a wide-ranging conversation with Michael Williams, Tsiolkas addresses topics including class, writerly craft and - on the back of his Monthly cover essay about the asylum seeker issue –our collective capacity for compassion and social progress.
Co-presented by the Wheeler Centre and Readings.
Michael Williams is the Director of the Wheeler Centre for Books, Writing and Ideas in Melbourne. He has worked at the Wheeler Centre since inception in 2009, when he was hired as the Head of Programming before being appointed as Director in September 2011.
He has hosted Blueprint for Living (2015–2016), then Talkfest (2017–2019), on ABC RN. He remains a regular guest on ABC Radio and TV. Michael has also worked as a Breakfast presenter for Melbourne’s 3RRR, as a member of the Australia Council’s Literature Board, in publishing and has written extensively for the Guardian, the Age, Sydney Morning Herald, Australian and elsewhere.
Christos Tsiolkas is the author of six novels, including Loaded, which was made into the feature film Head-On, The Jesus Man and Dead Europe, which won the 2006 Age Fiction Prize and the 2006 Melbourne Best Writing Award, as well as being made into a feature film. His fourth novel, the international bestseller The Slap, won Overall Best Book in the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize 2009, was shortlisted for the 2009 Miles Franklin Literary Award, longlisted for the 2010 Man Booker Prize and won the Australian Literary Society Gold, as well as the 2009 Australian Booksellers Association and Australian Book Industry Awards Books of the Year. Christos's fifth novel Barracuda was shortlisted for the ALS Gold Medal and the inaugural Voss Literary Prize. The Slap and Barracuda were both adapted into celebrated television series. His latest novel, Damascus, won the 2020 Prize for Fiction at the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards.
Christos's acclaimed collection of short stories, Merciless Gods, was published in 2014 and his critical literary study On Patrick White came out in 2018. He is also a playwright, essayist and screen writer. He lives in Melbourne.