Reviews and Comments

Fionnáin

fionnain@bookwyrm.social

Joined 2 years, 11 months ago

I arrange things into artworks, including paint, wood, plastic, raspberry pi, people, words, dialogues, arduino, sensors, web tech, light and code.

I use words other people have written to help guide these projects, so I read as often as I can. Most of what I read is literature (fiction) or nonfiction on philosophy, art theory, ethics and technology.

Also on Mastodon.

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Vanessa Onwuemezi: Dark Neighbourhood (2021, Fitzcarraldo Editions) 4 stars

Brilliant, inconsistent

3 stars

Any collection of short stories is bound to have some favourites and some less so. Just so with Dark Neighbourhood by Vanessa Onwuemezi.

Flashes of utter brilliance are clear in the title story and its apocalyptic undertones, and the weird tale of animalistic murder solving in Green Afternoon. The others mostly fail to live up to the better ones, with a little too much TV-style violent-drama in the tales for my taste. Definitely more than enough evidence here of an excellent, unorthodox voice to try more by Onwuemezi though.

Missouri Williams: The Doloriad (Paperback, 2022, Dead Ink) 5 stars

In the wake of an environmental cataclysm, the Matriarch and her family cling to existence. …

A world beyond world

4 stars

I am in awe of the rich imagination of Missouri Williams, which created this incestuous postapocalyptic township. Brothers and sisters and their offspring, last survivors after a cataclysmic event, rebuild aimlessly, guided by misinterpreted understandings of the old world taught by video tapes and a forgetful schoolmaster. The characters and setting are all uncanny and unnatural, but this only makes their weird motivations more believable.

The writing is excellent and teems with life from the first page. Although the narrative felt a little lost in the last section of the book, it was redeemed by a haunting and hopeful ending. Few books manage yo completely imagine a new ethics like this one does; it is a wonderful debut and I am excited to read more from Williams in the years to come.