Dave King biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

Dave King

Dave King

Dave King Biography

Dave King holds a BFA in painting and film from Cooper Union and an MFA in writing from Columbia University. King's debut novel, The Ha-Ha, was named one of the best books of 2005 by The Christian Science Monitor and The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and was among eighteen books included on The Washington Post list of the season's best novels. The Ha-Ha was a finalist for Book-of-the-Month Club's "Best Literary Fiction" award and the Quills Foundation "Best Debut Author" award and won King a 2006-07 Rome Prize Fellowship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters.

King's poetry has been published in The Paris Review, among other venues, and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. He has taught English at Baruch College and cultural studies and poetry at the School of Visual Arts in New York, and he divides his time between Brooklyn and the Hudson Valley of New York.

Dave King's website

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Interview

Dave King explains the title of his first novel, The Ha-Ha, and why he chose to write about a character whose traumatic brain injury limits his communication with the world.

Probably the question most frequently asked of any author finishing a manuscript is where exactly did the book come from? In the case of The Ha-Ha, the question has two parts. The first part involves the origins of protagonist Howard Kapostash, a character whose traumatic brain injury limits his communication within the world of the book, though he speaks articulately and intimately to the reader, while the second part involves the genesis and significance of the ha-ha itself. I think that by answering each part individually I may illuminate the book's genesis.

Howard's most obvious antecedent is my older brother Hank, who was profoundly autistic throughout his life. When I was a child, my understanding of Hank's disability was complicated and unresolved, and my long interest in those who are different--and differently abled--undoubtedly stems from this childhood curiosity. In some ways, my boyhood vision of Hank was that of most little brothers: he was a robust and handsome presence, big and blond and athletic and gray-eyed. At the same time, it was clear that whatever interesting sibling relationship my friends and cousins enjoyed was not happening with us. My brother was unpredictable and unreachable...

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Books by this Author

Books by Dave King at BookBrowse
The Ha-Ha jacket
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All the books below are recommended as readalikes for Dave King but some maybe more relevant to you than others depending on which books by the author you have read and enjoyed. So look for the suggested read-alikes by title linked on the right.
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  • Mark Haddon

    Mark Haddon

    Mark Haddon is the author of the international bestseller, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time. He won the Whitbread Award, Guardian Prize, and a Commonwealth Writers Prize for that work. In addition to The ... (more)

  • Liz Jensen

    Liz Jensen

    Liz Jensen was born in Oxfordshire, to an Anglo-Moroccan librarian mother and a Danish violin-maker father. She studied English at Somerville College, Oxford and worked first as a journalist in Hongkong and Taiwan. She then ... (more)

    If you enjoyed:
    The Ha-Ha

    Try:
    The Ninth Life of Louis Drax
    by Liz Jensen

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