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Matt Greene was born in Watford in 1985 and studied English Language at the University of Sussex, where he edited The Badger newspaper and first became interested in writing for the stage. He has co-written four plays for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, including the sell-out farce The Straight Man. Ostrich is his first novel.
Author photo © Imogen Haines
Growing up is hard enough without a deadline. Alex has a story to tell. He just doesn't know what kind of story it is yet. He's got a lot of the concerns every 12-year-old has but lately, ever since his brain surgery, everyone in his life is behaving more than a little mysteriously. He's certain there's something rotten at the heart of his parents' marriage, and when his beloved hamster Jaws 2 starts acting up as well he decides it's time to investigate. So begins the journey that will take him to the limits of his understanding and take you back to the wonder and conviction of your own adolescence, to a time when you understood the world so much better than it understood you.
September 2013 Debut of the Month. A charming, humorous and moving coming-of-age story that will be enjoyed by fans of Wonder by R. J. Palacio and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon. In some ways Alex is a normal 13 year old boy entering puberty; chaotic, obsessed with girls and sex. However, Alex isn’t your typical 13 year old as he has a brain tumour - which make him feel ‘ostrichized’. Once you get into the ‘stream of consciousness’ style of writing we think this is an intriguing debut from a writer to watch in the future. In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion for Ostrich a small number of Lovereading members were lucky enough to be invited to review this title - ' Ostrich is poignant, endearing and comedic. It’s a mixture of despair and light-heartedness concocted so well that you can’t help but fall in love with Matt Greene’s first novel.'- William Alexander. Scroll down to read more reviews.
A brilliant and moving coming-of-age story in the tradition of Wonder by R. J. Palacio and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddonthis debut novel is written with tremendous humor and charm.This is Alex's story. But he doesn't know exactly what it's about yet, so you probably shouldn't either.Instead, here are some things that it's sort of about (but not really):It's sort of (but not really) about brain surgery.It's sort of (but not really) about a hamster named Jaws 2 (after the original Jaws (who died), not the movie Jaws 2).It's sort of (but actually quite a lot) about Alex's parents.It's sort of (but not really) about feeling ostrichized (which is a better word for excluded (because ostriches can't fly so they often feel left out)).It's sort of (but not really (but actually, the more you think about it, kind of a lot)) about empathy (which is like sympathy only better), and also love and trust and fate and time and quantum mechanics and friendship and exams and growing up.And it's also sort of about courage. Because sometimes it actually takes quite a lot of it to bury your head in the sand.Praise for Ostrich ';Irresistible! Ostrich is loaded with wit, charm, and wisdom. Alex is one of the sweetest and most inspiring narrators I've ever encountered. I dare you not to laugh, cry, and fall utterly in love.'Maria Semple, New York Times bestselling author of Where'd You Go, Bernadette?';A coming-of-age story of some brilliance . . . I laughed heartily, sobbed unexpectedly, and significantly improved my grammar.'Nathan Filer, author of the Costa Book Award winner The Shock of the Fall';One of the bravest novels I've read in a very long time. Matt Greene lets the reader become detective, and clue by clue we uncover not only the truth of Alex's world, but the deepest truths of what it means to love and lose.'Carol Rifka Brunt, author of Tell the Wolves I'm Home ';Ostrich has given me the most enjoyable reading experience I've had all year and has one of the funniest and most engaging young narrators I've had the pleasure of reading. Matt Greene is seriously funny and in Ostrich proves comedy can be the finest of arts.'Matt Haig, author of The HumansFrom the Trade Paperback edition.