Ryan Ridge & Mel Bosworth - meet a nation of misfits only masquerading as such. For these up-and-comers, down-and-outs, and good-for-nothings move through Ryan Ridge’s and Mel Bosworth’s microfictions with a zealousness that obliges rockets and octopus-men, devil babies and light eaters
Ryan Ridge & Mel Bosworth, Camouflage Country, Queen's Ferry Press, 2015.
Step into Camouflage Country and meet a nation of misfits only masquerading as such. For these up-and-comers, down-and-outs, and good-for-nothings move through Ryan Ridge’s and Mel Bosworth’s microfictions with a zealousness that obliges rockets and octopus-men, devil babies and light eaters. Yet their earnestness also submits to stories like ‘Dust Bowling,’ ‘The Power of Pie Compels You,’ and ‘Cuckolding Down the Fort,’ which reveal the collection’s swift motion across the hilarious–heartbreaking spectrum. Featuring the illustrations of Jacob Heustis, Camouflage Country is a flipbook of faces incapable of concealment—too original to be overlooked, too distinctive to be forgotten.
"Ranging from short to super-duper short, the prose-poetic stories in Ryan Ridge’s and Mel Bosworth’s Camouflage Country zig and zag, fake and fade, keeping the reader guessing on every page, and the illustrations by Jacob Heustis are every bit as funny and surprising as the words they accompany. It’s a pinball machine of a book, full of bounce and light and crazy ricochets: sentences start, you don’t know where they’ll end up, and this dynamic unpredictability is what gives this collection its life and its victory." - Kathleen Rooney
"Swallow this book like it’s the last cold Michelob Ultra. Read it, do a little dance, then take it out back and shoot it. Take down this book like it’s the last thing you will ever do in this life, because I’m telling you, it most likely will be. Be with this book, and I mean be with it. Is it poetry? Is it prose? Who the hell cares. Bosworth and Ridge are great literary beasts by themselves, to be read often and carefully. Together they have become one wild fucking animal. These are the real bits of us, the hidden bits and the exposed, laid out in one stunning sentence after another. I’ll always keep Camouflage Country close by. I cried laughing, I have never read anything like it." - Ryan MacDonald
"Twenty things I want to say about Ryan Ridge and Mel Bosworth: 1) Did Poetry write these men into being? 2) Poetry was in a weird mood. 3) They’re good, you should know. 4) Like really, really good. 5) Repeat winners of Sentence of the Year. 6) Where do they get off? 7) Where do they get on, for that matter? 8) Can they show other writers the place? 9) Scratch that last question. 10) What I was meaning to say: there should be laws against these men. 11) Or at least a temporary injunction. 12) It’s like, Hold on! 13) We need to catch our breaths! 14) We need to unpretzel our minds! 15) Breath nets. 16) Mind…. 17) What? 18) Look what you’ve done to me here. 19) Just look. 20) See what I mean?" - Scott Garson