I don't know if I'm obliged to do this, but in fairness I think I should point out that I was not interviewing Peter V. Brett, I am simply sharing and in every case paraphrasing some of his reflections on his two published works, The Painted Man and The Desert Spear. And it's all good.
|Peter V. Brett - the life of George|
R. R. Martin's party
On the first day of the Con, after Peter’s signing, I had the chance to talk to him for ten minutes or so. It took me a while to get past gushing about his work, but eventually I got around to asking him about what I saw as one of the more controversial aspects of his books. I brought up the representation of Krasia in The Desert Spear (reviewed here). Those who have read The Painted Man and especially The Desert Spear (its sequel) would have noticed parallels between the Krasians and certain Middle Eastern cultures (at least, historical iterations of these cultures).
|Maintaining momentum in fiction -|
best panel of Aussiecon4
Peter replied to my rambling that he was indeed expecting to need to defend himself, but there had been virtually no backlash. I was glad that was the case, given that in my opinion he set out to make the Krasians as sympathetic as possible in the minds of Western readers. Yet there will always be those who get a sniff of controversy and jump on it.
What is particularly interesting is that Peter is not only American but a New Yorker. As a History and English graduate (and now a History teacher) my education has been saturated with the concept that a writer’s experiences and biases will inevitably bleed into their work, be it fiction or non-fiction. One can’t help but wonder how the events of 9/11 impact on Peter’s writing, especially his efforts to depict the Krasians.