Thursday, 8 April 2010

Currently Reading

The Tent by Margaret Atwood
On loan from the Leicester City Council Libraries.
I admit I have heard of the author but had not the pleasure of reading any of her books before. I picked this out from a library shelf on a whim (who says not to judge books by their covers???:) It's a delightfull collection of (very) short stories. Or is it long poems?
This is enigmatic, ephemeral writing - but with enough edge to give you a paper cut or two. Good storytelling in abundance. Fiction evolved and playfull, raw sophistication. The closest thing that comes to mind is Neil Gaiman's short stories in Smoke and Mirrors.
I recommend.
Here's a sample - quotes from the story entitled "Bottle II":

"That was when you heard the voice. My voice, to be precise. It was a small sibilant voice, like the rustling of old corn husks in a breeze, or of dried leaves kept for eons in a cave. It was a hissing, like steam escaping fitfully from a fissure in damp mud. An underground sound, hinting of unknown pressures, of unknown powers. It was an enticing whisper."

"How did it come to this? My present arachnid state. I was young once. I was beautiful, I was sought after, I had picturesque robes and exceptional talents. I uttered portents in caves: there were lineups, there were waiting lists for them. How did I come to be so tiny, so translucent, so wispy, so whispery? How did I come to be shut up inside this bottle? It's an unusual story, an incredible story, a story that could not take place today. I'm not sure I still believe it myself, though I'll tell it to anyone who'll lend an ear."

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