There are average, bog-standard tutors, and then there are the kind of tutors that turn into proper mentors.
I had the good fortune to be mentored by Antanas Sileika. He’s a fantastic novelist with a dark sense of humour – the perfect person to have helped me with my first novel. Antanas was much more than a tutor – he challenged me, championed me and encouraged me at every turn.
Antanas worked with me on the first novel I wrote, Famous By September. In the intervening years, I’ve written a few more and the other day I asked him if he had enough time to take a look at Carbunckle’s Flight (or as I like to call it, my pigeons).
Here’s what he had to say:
Gillian Best’s Carbunckle’s Flight is dark, witty, dyspeptic, and hilarious. This preposterous novel posits a father whose love of pigeon racing trumps all family bonds, a mother seeking solace elsewhere, a son reaching for a film-making dream and a mechanic daughter living an overweight nightmare. There is nothing predictable about this zany novel, whose unlikely characters share a taste for cutting repartee, and a tendency to end up in the most unlikely situations.
Thanks Antanas. It means a lot.