Author

Christine Otten

Christine Otten (b. 1961), writer and music journalist, debuted in 1995 with Blauw Metaal (Blue Metal) the story of a fifteen-year-old girl who is initiated by her elder brother into the mysterious world of music and desire. In Lente van glas (Glass Spring, 1998), the main character is obsessed by musician John Cale. Otten made her breakthrough in 2004 with the much-praised novel The Last Poets about the American poetry and rap group of that name. Her work is often based on real events. Her novel Rafaël (2014) is about the love between Winny, a Dutch woman, and Nizar, a Tunisian.

The Last Poets

The Last Poets

(Atlas, 2004, 443 pages)

In The Last Poets, Christine Otten writes about the lives of four Afro- American poets who were popular in the seventies and eighties: ‘The Last Poets’, Uman Bin Hassan, Felipe Luciano, David Nelson and Abiodun Oyewole. The author creates an extraordinarily lively image of fictionalized portraits, typed tape recordings of conversations with eyewitnesses, and lyrics / poems. Otten does not use the poems to spice up the story, rather she lets the words speak for themselves. This approach adds that shady dimension of life as it is – never really comprehensible – and against this background the texts vigorously come alive. Fiction, poetry, and documentary make for a sizzling and…

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We Had Love, We Had Weapons

We Had Love, We Had Weapons

(Atlas Contact, 2016, 248 pages)

Christine Otten’s new novel has a historical subject but is thoroughly topical. The commitment of today’s Black Lives Matter movement connects seamlessly with the battle by Rob and Mabel Williams, who in the 1950s fought for civil rights and equal treatment for black Americans.

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