Thursday, July 3, 2008

Martin Clark

Martin Clark’s first novel, The Many Aspects of Mobile Home Living, was a New York Times Notable Book and a finalist for the Stephen Crane First Fiction Award. His second novel, Plain Heathen Mischief, prompted The Charlotte Observer to call him “a rising star in American Letters.”

From a Q & A about his new novel,
The Legal Limit:

Q: Can you tell us a little about the title of this book? It seems “The Legal Limit” has multiple meanings here?

A: Several friends and early readers have noted that this title is not as rococo or obviously colorful as my prior choices—The Many Aspects of Mobile Home Living and Plain Heathen Mischief—and while it isn’t quite as flashy, I do think it provides a very good three-word summary of the book’s bigger themes. Without giving away too much, it’s fair to say the story deals with the rift that sometimes occurs between hidebound, black-letter law and simple justice. It touches on the fact that the court system is ill equipped to handle certain difficult situations, and it asks readers to make a fundamental judgment about how we want our courts and juries to decide issues that dramatically affect peoples’ lives. On another level, the title references .08, the legal limit for DUI in Virginia, and the resolution of a borderline drunk driving case is a fairly important part of the novel.
Read the entire Q & A.

Visit Martin Clark’s website.

--Marshal Zeringue