Twenty-five slices of the grotesque, the macabre and beyond from a gifted literary novelist with an eye for all things horrible.
Evenson’s latest (Immobility, 2012, etc.) is a great introduction to his unique mindset, but it’s not for the faint of heart. The title story is a good example, a short portrait of a boy who loves, above all things, his sister, who is, one day, inexplicably gone, unremembered by everyone except the boy. Other works seem to echo the anxiety of Edgar Allen Poe, as in the confessional “Angel of Death,” whose narrator confesses, “Questions have begun to plague me. About where I am, what I am doing here, where are we going. As I have not even the faintest most tentative of answers to them, I find I have no idea how to entertain them.” A pair of stories offer metaphysical takes on the physical presence of “The Absent Eye” and “The Other Ear.” There are a couple of great procedurals as well, “The Moldau Case” and “The Sladen Suit,” that lend a sense of humor to their ever-so-serious proceedings. And there is no funnier story here than “Bon Scott: The Choir Years,” in which an enterprising rock journalist discovers secret information outing the late lead singer of AC/DC as a member of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.
A unique collection, proving that Evenson is as deft at moving between genres as a ghost passing through a wall.