Author(s): Will Davis
A man will endlessly torture his muscles until they shriek and complain. But he will not give in. He will take a hammer to his ceiling until neighbours begin to watch from the window and journalists knock at the door. He will continue to train and hack away at the house until it is finished and the trapeze is in place. Although his parents thought he was nice and kind-hearted and teachers saw him as a good boy, secretly he hated his drab, ordered world and longed for more. Then, when he was fourteen, a new boy arrived at his school. Edward exuded the coolness of a latter-day Oscar Wilde. Edward listened to Patti Smith, watched Fassbinder films and knew the writings of Gore Vidal, and one evening, would kiss him in the moonlight. Forty years old and fleeing from a life he can no longer handle, he stumbles upon the circus. Not knowing why, only that he must, he gets in his car and follows after it, refusing to listen to the doubts that plague him, determined to build a new home and family. The Trapeze Artist draws together the past, present and future of one life to create a work of startling dexterity and vision - a haunting and heartbreaking account of a child, a boy, a man, desperate to free himself from the suffocating weight of his desires, his family and his grief. It speaks of what it is to grow up gay in a straight world, to be unable to communicate with those you love, of the sweat, passions and tempers of circus life, and above all, the longing to break free, and to swing higher and higher...
An exceptional, break-out, coming-of-age novel from the talented Betty Trask Award-winning writer, Will Davis
An extraordinary tale of tragedy and failure in love, told with great panache Edmund White Will Davis is a witty writer who effortlessly conjures up the frenetic detail of Jaz's sixteen-year-old world Independent on Sunday on My Side of the Story A fresh and funny novel about growing up gay, with absolutely no help from a mad family. Davis gives his narrator a wonderfully wry outlook Kate Saunders, The Times The dialogue fizzes with savvy one-liners ... Davis's observations of the dysfunctions of family and school are as sharp as his prose is fresh, and his debut is intriguing, touching and entertaining Time Out
Will Davis is the author of two novels, My Side of the Story, which won the Betty Trask Prize 2007, and Dream Machine. He has trained as an aerialist and specializes in corde lisse (rope), tissu (silks) and static trapeze. He lives in Highbury, London.