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Now That You're Back

Summary Now That You're Back

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 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

Free read ☆ PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook · A.L. Kennedy

Tion of impotence the humour of discomfort as human beings chafe together the crazed claustrophobia of the family adn the wildly funny results of an eccentricity unleash This is one of the strangest and weirdest collection of stories I've read in some time; some of them completely sail over my head and others are just incredibly 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 The Complete Elmore the humour of discomfort as human beings chafe MahaBrahmana together Investigative Poetry the crazed claustrophobia of The Mortal Heart (Beautiful Creatures: The Untold Stories, the family adn The Wild West the wildly funny results of an eccentricity unleash This is one of Aramaic Light on Genesis the strangest and weirdest collection of stories I've read in some Souichis Diary of Curses; 双一の呪い日記; Sōichi no Noroi no Nikki time; some of درد زمانه them completely sail over my head and others are just incredibly off putting But Early Medieval this book manages Freakshow to reach Pompeii at Dusk (Fresco Nights saga Book 2) three stars for Escape from Kathmandu two reasons 1 AL Kennedy has an incredibly smooth writing style in spite of Talked to Death the head scratching subject matter and 2 a number of stories in More Relaxing, Less Taxing the collection are absolute gems whether its Diana Palmer Duets, through a sense of humour with penguins or a melancholy story about never meeting your idols especially retired writers

A.L. Kennedy · 4 Free read

S define and deny their chosen identities While showing us the unlikeliness of intimacy and the impossibility of communication Kennedy also reveals the subversive libera An extremely good short story collection She has a very distinctive voice There are some very funny stories On Having More Sense The Mousebok's Family Dictionary and some dark 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 Her Secret Santa their chosen identities While showing us Those Annoying Post Bros. the unlikeliness of intimacy and The Taming of the Tights (Misadventures of Tallulah Casey, the impossibility of communication Kennedy also reveals Breeding the Coachs Wife (Men Only the subversive libera An extremely good short story collection She has a very distinctive voice There are some very funny stories On Having More Sense The Mousebok's Family Dictionary and some dark creepy bizarre ones Mefie Toi, Gone that are funny in a very off kilter way A Perfect Possession Mixing With Angels and Outcasts the Folks Back Home A standout for me The Spirit of Open Adoption though was How Bizarre the sweet and haunting Christine A major The Complete Elmore talent


10 thoughts on “Now That You're Back

  1. says:

    Sunday February 1st 2015 I’m sitting here staring at the slanting snow outside snow that is too wet slushy and dirty 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 anyone who may be trying to get an idea of what AL Kennedy is about from this review which I can now call a review since it’s grown to three sentences in length but I’m still very tryingWednesday February 4th 2015 the thing is AL Kennedy doesn’t make it easy for the reader; she works hard at keeping us out until she decides to invite us in pacing her stories very very carefullyThursday February 5th 2015 as we draw closer to the heart of an AL Kennedy story all the odd shaped pieces we'd been puzzling over start to slot together and we begin to see exactly where Kennedy is taking us and while it's never exactly anywhere pretty it's always somewhere interestingFriday February 6th 2015 this might be the day I get to explain why AL Kennedy's writing impresses me so much especially as Friday is payday but with AL Kennedy even the words Friday Payday don't have the usual significance meaning turns inside out her pay our pay not the same thing at all although we all kind of like it to come earlySaturday February 7th 2015 here we are rolling towards another snowy Sunday and I’m wondering what I’ve done with the week besides warming my hands on the keyboard and annoying many gr friends by floating this serialised review of AL Kennedy’s short story collection Now That You're Back in the updates daily which I did because I find Kennedy to be a fiercely talented person whose writing deserves nay demands a different review approach because like the writer character in the story Warming My Hands and Telling Lies the ‘lies’ Kennedy invents are obliue innovative satirical sexy hilarious wise tragic curious but most of all human in all the hues daintily delicate to downright dirty that man contains Sunday February 8th 2015 I’m sitting here staring at the slanting snow outside


  2. says:

    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 do 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 guess 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 dictate what happens to him but remains lost and directionless 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 the 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 twisted puppeteer an underage prostitute a ballet dancer — all with hopes and fears but each one ultimately lonely or alone contemplating abandonment past and present abuse creeping age and certain death Frighteningly Kennedy is able to get into the heads of fundamentalists sociopaths and psychopaths and see the 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 Folks 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 disturbed or damaged people such as the ones that Kennedy so effectively portrays here It’s a tribute to her language and descriptive 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 disturbing portrait gallery of characters both haunted and hauntinghttpwpmep2oNj1 D6


  3. says:

    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


  4. says:

    An extremely good short story collection She has a very distinctive voice There are some very funny stories On Having More Sense The Mousebok's Family Dictionary and some dark 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


  5. says:

    having once written a love e mail in the form of a dictionary of poetic terms ? i have a weakness for alternative fictionalised glossaries the middle story 'the mouseboks family dictionary' is harrowing hilarious and deftly paced cross referenced she's a varied intelligent short story writer and there was a subtle charm to the rest of the stories i was drawn in but ultimately unsettled by them in not the best way weirdly similar in tone to 'the cement garden' by ian mcewan though by no means as icky i seem to be consistently creeped out by mid '90s brit fic so that's just me


  6. says:

    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 still does 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’d call it post modern but it harks back to Ambrose Bierce’s The Devil’s Dictionary Even if imitative her use of a dictionary to tell her “story” is innovative and funny yet deadly serious


  7. says:

    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 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 Kennedy actually shows none of this shyness and strolls among her characters with the wits and confidence of a Mark Twain This funny uirky and irreverent text is an oddity standing out among he collection as if written by someone else Where all the other texts show in their tone a consistency announcing the emergence of a personal style this one’s voice is completely different AL Kennedy was not even thirty when this was published Apparently the only way she could trust her skills at that time was by borrowing someone else’s voiceThe other stories are for the most part obscure Kennedy writes from inside her character’s head She writes diaries confessions; her texts are scarce on concrete details and detailed on emotions The action is always blur indistinct other people’s motives unclear as is the unfurling of the plot Her voice though is already here coldly lucid emotionally hurt resigned to the worst The deceptions of love the inadeuacy between language and feelings the violence of every day life It is as always with her an uncomfortable read albeit not devoid of humour But humour never dominates It is at best a temporary shelter from the chilling realities of being a humanFrom the early stages of her career AL Kennedy is a wounded soul who carries on exposing herself This is what makes her such a moving writer These early stories expose in full view the raw layers of feelings that constitute to this day her primary material They are a worthwhile read if you are already a fan But as the first rule dictates do not judge her by them If you are to start reading her start with Day


  8. says:

    This is one of the strangest and weirdest collection of stories I've read in some time; some of them completely sail over my head and others are just incredibly 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


  9. says:

    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 to my bookshelf but I’m glad it did


  10. says:

    This is an amazing book brimming with sarcasm and wit I have never forgotten the ever amazing Mousebok's family dictionary with its subtle dose of twisted realism and humour Twenty two years after reading it it's still with me


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