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The Membranous Lounge

de Hank Kirton

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412,816,727 (5)Nenhum(a)
Paraphilia Books presents a collection of twisted nihilistic fables for the post-capitalist world. Welcome To The Membranous Lounge! Where ugliness and beauty melt and run together, where reality is temperamental and the boundary between "normal" and grotesque is nebulous.The Membranous Lounge is a zone of slippage, a twilight area between the layers of the world that are familiar and the terrifyingly unknown. It is a chimerical realm inhabited by the hopeless, dispossessed, and those who have simply turned away.Imagine if Ray Bradbury and Jerri Cain Rossi had a child that they locked away from the world, with only the Marquis De Sade for reading matter, and a dietary intake of bad LSD and atrocious B Movies. The Membranous Lounge would be the spawn of that child's imagination. With an introduction by Jim Rose (of the Jim Rose Circus)… (mais)
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There are recurring themes and details in this collection: nosebleeds, puddles of mud, suicide obsessions, LSD use, revenge via supernatural powers, revenge that likely will not result in catharsis, mystic women and obsessed men, strange eyes, strange bodies. They are all elements of a minor mythology that Kirton is creating that consists of of blue-collar men who miss their chances, of exploited women who evade the worst, of freaks being the only people anyone can trust, of love existing where it shouldn’t, of gritty, dimly-lit places inhabited by people balancing on a razor’s edge of sanity, be it by organic illness or drug use. Magic exists here, but so do very bad people, people without hope, people who cannot win and people who win only when the worst impulses we have come into play. And yet I did not finish reading this book with relief nor did I feel oppressed as I was reading. Rather, in the midst of some of these stories, there is an uneasy justice that makes the darkness easier experienced. In some there is humor that varies between dry and vulgar that lightens the story. In others the characters were not bad, or frightening, but merely thwarted and struggling.

Kirton has a style that is quite unique. It’s almost as if someone had run through a blender short stories from Raymond Carver and Charles Bukowski, then added some Diane Arbus photos and a splash of Grimm’s Fairy Tales, and then garnished the final product with stills from Tod Browning’s Freaks. But even that does not really come close to explaining this style that is so evocative of other voices yet never comes close to being a pastiche. My reaction to this collection was so incredibly personal that I almost hesitate recommending it wholeheartedly but I think most people who read here would find something in this book that would be to their tastes. So I do recommend this book. I should mention that some of the editing issues that often plague small publishers came up in this book, with homophone substitutions and a less than stellar use of semicolons. However, compared to some other small presses and even some large press books I have discussed here, these problems are minor and seldom interfere with the flow of the story. Beyond that, I think this book has such an unusual voice that even if it does not pull from the reader the same sense of belonging that it did in me, Kirton’s imagination and prose will be enough reason to read it. Read my entire review here: http://ireadoddbooks.com/the-membranous-lounge-by-hank-kirton/ ( )
  oddbooks | May 13, 2011 |
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Paraphilia Books presents a collection of twisted nihilistic fables for the post-capitalist world. Welcome To The Membranous Lounge! Where ugliness and beauty melt and run together, where reality is temperamental and the boundary between "normal" and grotesque is nebulous.The Membranous Lounge is a zone of slippage, a twilight area between the layers of the world that are familiar and the terrifyingly unknown. It is a chimerical realm inhabited by the hopeless, dispossessed, and those who have simply turned away.Imagine if Ray Bradbury and Jerri Cain Rossi had a child that they locked away from the world, with only the Marquis De Sade for reading matter, and a dietary intake of bad LSD and atrocious B Movies. The Membranous Lounge would be the spawn of that child's imagination. With an introduction by Jim Rose (of the Jim Rose Circus)

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