E edge of the world where the land merges with the sea and the sky We sincerely hope so though even with the final It s all right we can never be sureWithin these taut and often terse mini portraits we range the world from Kennedy s adopted home of Glasgow to London from Wales to "Paris and from rural America to an ocean cruise In similar scenes we glimpse individuals a fatuous guru a " and from rural America to an ocean cruise In similar scenes we glimpse individuals a fatuous guru a puppeteer an underage prostitute a ballet ancer all with hopes and fears but each one ultimately lonely or alone contemplating abandonment past and present abuse creeping age and certain eath Frighteningly Kennedy is able to "get into the heads of fundamentalists sociopaths and psychopaths and see "into the heads of fundamentalists sociopaths and psychopaths and see world from their warped point of view from the controlling parents in A Perfect Possession to the committed guerrilla in The Boy s Fat Dog from the fan verging on stalker in Warming My Hands And Telling Lies To The Serial Killer S Lover In Mixing With The the serial killer s lover in Mixing With The Back Home You might think that it s all bleakness in these tales but there is some leavening We have a perfect take on the paranormal in Christine humour in On Having More Sense and satire in the rather strange The Mouseboks Family Dictionary But there is something sad about the collection as a whole hinting at the strangeness that resides in every one of us however much a view of normalcy we might try to project to the rest of the world The problem is I m going to be a little anxious about getting into a lift in future if the world is really inhabited by isturbed or Whispers Of The Heart damaged people such as the ones that Kennedy so effectively portrays here It s a tribute to her language andescriptive skills that we almost believe they inhabit our real world rather than merely residing in her imagination Now That You re Back is an impressive but The Dukes Gamble disturbing portrait gallery of characters both haunted and hauntinghttpwpmep2oNj1 D6 Sunday February 1st 2015 I m sitting here staring at the slanting snow outside snow that is too wet slushy andirty to ever be the pretty version of the stereotype snow scene and I m wishing I could summarise the grimy eccentric unconventional world of AL Kennedy s stories in one sentenceMonday February 2nd 2015 two well chosen sentences might be enough to explain everything I feel about AL Kennedy s Perfect possession of the short story format if I were AL Kennedy because she s nothing if not subtleTuesday February 3rd 2015 I know I m not making it easy for any. Tion of impotence the humour of iscomfort as human beings chafe together the crazed claustrophobia of the family adn the wildly funny results of an eccentricity unleash. ,
SUMMARY Now That You're Back,
This is an amazing book brimming with sarcasm and wit I have never forgotten the ever amazing Mousebok s family ictionary with its subtle ose of twisted realism and humour Twenty two years after reading it it s still with me This a collection of short stories with a terrifying cover so I had no idea what to expect It was great Dark but insightful nice to read some short stories for a change it s a big ask to set the stage and create something to care about in just a few pages I m not sure how this made it on and create something to care about in just a few pages I m not sure how this made it on my bookshelf but I m glad it id This is one "Of The Strangest And Weirdest "the strangest and weirdest of stories I ve read in some time some of them completely sail
Over My Head And Others Are Justmy head and others are just off putting But this book manages to reach three stars for two reasons 1 AL Kennedy has an incredibly smooth writing style in spite of the head scratching subject matter and 2 a number of stories in the collection are absolute gems whether its through a sense of humour with penguins or a melancholy story about never meeting your idols especially retired writers There are two rules with a writer s early works never start with them never review them They are good enough for the fans and the academics Laymen like you and me should stay awayWith AL Kennedy I am breaking both rules I should not particularly the second one Reviewing early works outside of academic publication is utterly unfair and this is whyThe author s style is not yet mature her matter has not completely emerged from her teenage Major Westhavens Unwilling Ward (Hh desire to express herself her thoughts are not entirely articulate Most of the stories in this collection suffer from their author s shyness Her lack of confidence in her own writing is palpable It is most evidenced in Mixing With the Folks Back Home the only text where AL Ken Kennedy s second collection with a novel written or at least published in between She touches on some of the same themes as the previous collection stilloes a lot of monologues but this collection has a broader range of styles even a traditional story with scenes The Mouseboks Family Dictionary is a brilliant experiment I Major Westhavens Unwilling Ward d call it post modern but it harks back to Ambrose Bierce s The Devil s Dictionary Even if imitative her use of aictionary to tell her story is innovative and funny yet eadly serious having once written a love e mail in the form of a ictionary of poetic terms i have a weakness for alternative fictionalised glossaries the middle. Exposing and exploring the sinuous undercurrents of violence anguish and love AL Kennedy examines the nature of the individual both in isolation and society as character. ,
Story the mouseboks family An extremely good short story collection She has a very istinctive voice There are some very
Funny Stories On Having Morestories On Having More The Mousebok s Family Dictionary and some ark creepy bizarre ones that are funny in a very off kilter way A Perfect Possession Mixing With the Folks Back Home A standout for me though was the sweet and haunting Christine A major talent This was my first Kennedy encounter I really liked it A couple of the stories were a bit strange or a little vague but even with them her wit style shone through Others were simply gorgeous I enjoyed her in the same way I love Zoe Strachan s stuff in that Glasgow is often an element in the stories a Glasgow which I know which is neither tartanised nor criminalised Instead its uniue characteristics are allowed to show through for better or for worse Opening a collection of short stories is a little like getting into a lift or elevator if you prefer you never know who ll get in for how long they ll ride whether you re likely to engage with them or what relationship if any they are likely to have with each other Your curiosity may or may not be piued you may wrinkle your nose at the smell or be embarrassed at the enforced intimacy however transient What you o know is that like any passenger in the lift you re unlikely to be vouchsafed someone s life story that your experience will only produce brief and probably blurry mental snapshots of your fellow travellers And so it is with this collection of A L Kennedy vignettes In virtually every tale the reader arrives in medias res you pass through gates straight into the midst of the action such as "It May Be Trying To "may be trying to at characters motivation context relationships tone and as each story concludes you never uite know if you ve got a handle on it all if your grasping at the situation attains something substantial or merely thin air Sometimes a story reflects this seeming lack of substance in Failing "to Fall the narrator allows others to ictate what happens to him "Fall the narrator allows others to A Guide to Americas Sex Laws dictate what happens to him remains lost andirectionless when not told to get into a taxi to who knows where In Armageddon Blue the protagonist is literally all at sea with her life having cast off her previous relationships and in hope than in certainty seeking both landfall and answers in the near future And in the title story of the collection a young man is looking for his lost self will he find it back with what remains of his family at th. S Agewise define andeny their chosen identities While showing us the unlikeliness of intimacy and the impossibility of communication Kennedy also reveals the subversive libera.