Again, here I am catching up. This past month I got to choose the book for our book club podcast, so I chose the controversial TAMPA from 2013, the first novel by the indisputably gifted Alissa Nutting.
This is the summary from the author’s website:
In Alissa Nutting’s novel TAMPA, Celeste Price, a smoldering 26-year-old middle-school teacher in Florida, unrepentantly recounts her elaborate and sociopathically determined seduction of a 14-year-old student.
The subject matter couldn’t be more timely. Taking it on from the perspective of the perpetrator is remarkably bold, in my opinion. There are so many places to balk or to err, but this is a story told with determination, masterfully rendered and brilliantly uncomfortable. This book really needs to get under the skin to do what I think it’s intended to do, and boy, does the point get made. On the podcast you will hear me rave and rave and rave and rave. (By the way, sorry about my voice.)
That link will take you to a page where you can download the podcast, or else you can just listen directly online.
If you’ve already heard our take and you’d like to know more, here are a few links I compiled while reading about the novel:
TAMPA is an uneasy read, but a valuable document of a modern moment, a necessary moral corrective, and a prickly piece of impeccably-crafted art. This is an author whose next book should be eagerly anticipated by everyone who appreciates challenging subject matter and good storytelling.