Pretty Monsters, short stories written by Kelly Link, illustrations by Shaun Tan
This post is inspired by Heather Kelly who went and saw Kelly Link and friends last week. Go hear what she has to say about the experience at her blog.Technically I read Kelly Link way back in September of 2009. But that was back when I was not blogging about every book I read. So I coordinated this post with Heather. And apparently I need assignments to get my posting done. So thank you, Heather, dear co-worker of mine!
Magical realism! I do love it so! And Link's magical worlds are realistic. In fact I believed them quite emphatically. There is something about the revelation of detail in the short stories, unfolding in slowness, that made the acceptance of this other world hard to pinpoint. And I wanted to figure it out so as to write just like her! Is it something to do with language? yes. Is it the details? yes. She does everything well. There's a sense that the world its off, Is it because his dad drugged him and dragged him on to a plane to Costa Rica? But maybe it is also because the narrator is so real: the declarative statement: Soccer is what I was meant to do? or his disbelief in the science fiction that everyone else had bought hook line and sinker. Is it the details; men's pajamas with women's diaries printed on them, a purse with teeth, a world plagued by a the flu, (really not so far off from our dearly held fears).
I didn't connect with every story but some that I liked were "The Surfer," the flu has everyone quaranteened and wondering if the aliens will return. "The Faery Handbag," a purse with teeth and another dimension. "The Library" teens and technology and odd TV shows where the viewers are also the stars. "The Hortlak" an all-night convenience store where zombies shop and the two store clerks love a girls who takes dogs from the animal shelter out for their last car ride before being put down (this last one is from Magic for Beginners, I believe but I loved the sad tone of it).
Stranger Things Happen
Magic for Beginners
Small Beer Press is an indie house that Link and her husband founded and have Link's previous story collections available for download.
Sorry I have been a little absent. I have been spending time time here:
Check it out to see what I have been doing.
More about that later this week(read: tomorrow).
Also, my last post was number 200. This is post 201. Woo Hoo!
As Always (wishing you were here!),