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Showing posts from August, 2010

Oisín Curran - W. Bluebottle’s 24-hour romp through shifting times, places, and points of view in pursuit of his lost dog and ghost sister

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OisínCurran, Mopus, Counterpath Press, 2006.

"An astounding debut novel, written with courage, innovation, wisdom, style. Oisîn Curran leads us onto a topology of narrative surfaces that appear and disappear seamlessly: subway terrorists in an urban density, a bucolic meadow and stream, postapocalyptic devastation, a ninth century abbey, forty-fifth century conspiracies. The narrative here allows one to enter the creative guts of storytelling, to experience it as a living force. Curran is like Beckett, Woolf, Joyce, Barnes, Bernhard, Celine, Faulkner, in whose work powerful prose excavates the ground of narrative itself, and exposes the sources and necessity of storytelling."

“Ostensibly, Mopus is William Bluebottle’s 24-hour romp through shifting times, places, and points of view in pursuit of his lost dog and ghost sister. Curran’s masterful work of concise metafiction is cinematic and dreamlike, but it is also understated and lyrical. Like Kelly Link’s stories, the telling …

Anthony Metivier – "Slurrealistic" threat: where the horrors/hilarity of cosmetic surgery, psychoanalysis, and political porn meet

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Anthony Metivier, The Tupperware Blitzkrieg, Atropos Press, 20o9.

«Simultaneously his most accessible and his most extreme book, Anthony Metivier's The Tupperware Blitzkrieg is a powerful concoction of sexual excess, self-deification and terminal violence. In this hallucinatory novel, plastic surgery, psychoanalysis and the pornography of American politics provide the hellish tableau in which Doctor Umbilico, founder of 'People for the Advancement of Lying' turned PCP swilling nightmare priest of the surgical ward, executes biomorphical atrocities culminating in the capture and radical transformation of an eerily Bush-like apocalyptic president. Multiple characters tell the story of this twisted visionary as he careens forward with his own maniacal pitch for world domination.
As The Tupperware Blitzkrieg hurtles toward its unforgettable conclusion, Metivier depicts the most sordid aspects of contemporary commercial life in a complex, obsessive, often poetic and disquieting c…

Henry Parland - The revolution of things, the idealism of things: Immediate as a necktie, the saxophone of life's jazz band!

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Henry Parland, Ideals Clearance, Trans. by Johannes Göransson, Ugly Duckling Presse, 2006.

"Just when you thought there were no more discoveries to be made in modernist poetry, along comes a Finno-Swedish Russian German Lithuanian teen prodigy from the 1920's, Henry Parland, in Johannes Göransson's zippy translation. Did anyone ever pack so much delightful weirdness into so few lines?" —Eliot Weinberger

«Henry Parland's (1908-1930) brief but prolific and highly influential career as a poet, essayist and novelist was shaped by the tumultuous times of Russia and Europe between the two world wars. He lived in Russia, Finland and Lithuania, but his first language was German. His wide range of literary influences included Finland-Swedish Expressionism, Dada and Die Neue Sachlichkeit from Germany, Russian Futurism and Formalism, American writers Carl Sandberg, Edgar Lee Masters and F. Scott Fitzgerald, and French novelists Marcel Proust and Andre Gide, In addition, he …

Rohan Kriwaczek - An elaborate forgery, an eccentric alternative history, a postmodern joke, a meditation on the modern West's denial of death

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Rohan Kriwaczek, An Incomplete History of the Art of the Funerary Violin, Gerald Duckworth, 2006.

"The art of funerary violin, although little known today, emerged during the Protestant Reformation and for almost 300 years was an integral part of European interment ceremonies. The Protestant rejection of the doctrine of human intercession left a "spiritual vacuum" into which specialist violinists stepped, their music conveying "both the tragedy of a spirit lost forever to this world and the triumphant ascension of a soul unto the eternity of the hereafter".
This golden age saw funerary violinists such as Bulstrode Whycherly and Pierre Dubuisson usher thousands of people, including royalty, to their eternal rest. Sadly, by the mid-19th century funerary violin was coming under increasing attack from extremist Catholic groups. Eventually its practitioners were terrorised into silence, or forced to withdraw into clandestine societies through whose agency the traditi…