Cartwright, Anthony 1973–
Cartwright, Anthony 1973–
PERSONAL: Born 1973, in Dudley, England.
ADDRESSES: Office—Royal Docks Community School, Prince Regent Ln., Custom House, London E16 3HS, England. Agent—Luke Brown, Tindal Street Press, 217 Custard Factory, Gibb St., Birmingham B9 4AA, England.
CAREER: Royal Docks Community School, London, England, teacher.
AWARDS, HONORS: Betty Trask First Novel Award, and James Tait Black Memorial Prize shortlist, both for The Afterglow.
The Afterglow (novel), Tindal Street Press (Birmingham, England), 2004.
SIDELIGHTS: British author Anthony Cartwright received the Betty Trask First Novel Award for The Afterglow, a "gritty and engrossing" work, according to a critic in Kirkus Reviews. Cartwright, who teaches English at an East London school, sets his debut novel in England's "Black Country," a decaying industrial area near Birmingham. The book's protagonist, Luke, struggles to make a living as a meatpacker in his hometown, where he lives with his father, an unemployed steelworker, and mother. The family is haunted by the death of Luke's brother, Adam, some fifteen years earlier. As Cartwright told Birmingham Post interviewer Caroline Foulkes, The Afterglow is "a story about the death of a child and the changes that it brings and how people deal with it. But it's also about the wider changes going on around the characters, in the background, changes that are happening on a much wider scale because of the movement from an industrial economy to a more service based one, and how the changes affect them." John Flatley, reviewing The Afterglow on the Frontline Books Web site, described the novel as "rich in authenticity, the characters drawn from close observation, their lives and problems real and convincing, and their speech and thought patterns precisely evoked. It is a novel driven by anger at the social conditions that limit and waste people's lives, but it is an anger that remains rational and never lapses into blind fury." In the Manchester Guardian, Rachel Hore called the work "a most impressive and worth-while debut."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Birmingham Post (Birmingham, England), April 7, 2004, Caroline Foulkes, "Secret of Writing a Bostin Bewk" (interview).
Chronicle (Stourbridge, England), March 4, 2005, "Hoping for Place among Legends."
Guardian (Manchester, England), May 1, 2004, Rachel Hore, "Layers of Narrative," review of The Afterglow.
Kirkus Reviews, October 15, 2004, review of The Afterglow, p. 975.
Frontline Books Web site, http://www.frontlinebooks.co.uk/ (September, 2004), John Flatley, review of The Afterglow.