Meet Celeste Price, an 8th grade English teacher - with a singular sexual obsession.
Celeste Price is an eighth-grade English teacher in suburban Tampa. She is attractive. She drives a red Corvette. Her husband, Ford, is rich, square-jawed and devoted to her. But Celeste has a secret. She has a singular sexual obsession - fourteen-year-old boys. It is a craving she pursues with sociopathic meticulousness and forethought. Within weeks of her first term at a new school, Celeste has lured the charmingly modest Jack Patrick into her web - car rides after dark, rendezvous at Jack's house while his single father works the late shift, and body-slamming encounters in Celeste's empty classroom between periods. It is bliss.
Celeste must constantly confront the forces threatening their affair - the perpetual risk of exposure, Jack's father's own attraction to her, and the ticking clock as Jack leaves innocent boyhood behind. But the insatiable Celeste is remorseless. She deceives everyone, is close to no one and cares little for anything but her pleasure.
With crackling, stampeding, rampantly sexualized prose, Tampa is a grand, satirical, serio-comic examination of desire and a scorching literary debut.
Read Caroline Baum's Review
Ignore the terrible title for Australia: it gives completely the wrong impression: this is not a book about boat people.
It's set in Tampa, Florida where a smart, sexy thirty-something married predatory school teacher seduces prepubescent male students.
Written with the same brutally caustic voice as Lionel Shriver's We Need to Talk About Kevin, this is a disturbing, provocative, re imagining of Lolita with a gender reversal. Bound to cause a kerfuffle and generate a lot of heated debate.
About the Author
Alissa Nutting is an assistant professor of creative writing at John Carroll University. She is the author of the award-winning collection of stories, Unclean Jobs for Women and Girls. Her work has appeared in the New York Times, Oprah, Tin House, Fence and Bomb, among others. This is her first novel.
BOOKTOPIA INTERVIEW: ALISSA NUTTING ANSWERS BOOKTOPIA'S TEN TERRIFYING QUESTIONS - CLICK HERE
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Comments about Tampa:
I had heard all the hype about the book so I was curious to read it. At first I found Celeste a totally distasteful character; however, testimony to Alissa Nutting's writing, by half way through the book I was completely on Celeste's side. Although I do not condone Celeste's behaviour I think women will be able to relate to her resistance of female sexuality being defined by men. I read the second half of the book in one sitting unable to put it down. It is the best book I have read in a long time.
Brave and beautifully written; a provocative look at a taboo subject. -- Irvine Welsh Tampa is an instant classic. A dirty, funny, shocking, provocative, Nabokovian scandal-in-waiting that will be read and mis-read and fiercely debated. -- Matt Haig Tampa is a wild ride - sexy, fast, funny, and frightening, the counterpoint to Lolita. Humbert Humbert is tame by comparison. You won't want anyone to know how much you enjoyed reading this book. -- David Vann Tampa charms and seduces you into the mind of its remorseless female protagonist then twists the knife by skating uncomfortably close to your own inner darkness. Lock up your sons. -- Viv Albertine
Number Of Pages: 272
Published: 1st August 2013
Publisher: Faber & Faber
Dimensions (cm): 21.6 x 13.5 x 2.3
Weight (kg): 0.3
Edition Number: 1