Monday, May 03, 2010

NOT SO PERFECT by Nik Perring

Not So Perfect by Nik Perring was kindly sent to me by Roast Books. I read most of it soon after it arrived and finished it last night. There's lots of good stuff here, and it is a pleasure to read. It consists of 22 sort pieces, some so short they are akin to poetry: 'When You're Frightened Honey Think of Strawberries', for instance is just one page long and yet for me was one of the most successful pieces in the book.

Another I think works particularly well is 'Watching, Listening' - a creepy tale about a man watching a mother read in a library and explores that narrow area between curiosity and the obsessive interest of the stalker.

Nik Perring also shows he can swap gender convincingly in 'The Lump' - as well as play around with the reader's expectations. It's well written and surprising.

I also very much like 'The Other Mr. Panossian' in the way the story is hinted at but not said, but I think in terms of story it was Sobs that was my favourite. It was unusual, atmospheric and particularly well structured - quite an accomplishment for a story of six short sides.

There are other stories too, many based on marvellous ideas full of potential: 'The Shark Boy' who can't stop moving; the woman who actually spits fire; another woman who vomits animals - and Nik Perring goes running with them, rather like Tania Hershman did in 'The White Road'.

The collection is beautifully presented by Roast Books - everything that this publisher produces is a little gem and I think any author published by them is a fortunate one.


Anonymous India Drummond said...

I will definitely be checking this out. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on the stories... there are so many books out there, that I tend to like to hear recommendations first.

Tue May 04, 09:58:00 am  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

I'm sorry, I did reply to this, India - it somehow has become lost.

Anyway, thank you for your comment. I hope you like it... and in reference to your blog post - it is definitely not YA!

Wed May 05, 01:00:00 pm  
Blogger Nik Perring said...

Clare, thanks you. I'm thrilled you liked it!

And thanks India, too. Hope you enjoy it, even though it isn't YA!


Wed May 05, 04:13:00 pm  
Blogger Nik Perring said...

Or 'thank you' even!

Wed May 05, 04:13:00 pm  
Blogger Vanessa Gebbie said...

I got mine! What a gorgeous book - V

Sat May 08, 03:05:00 pm  
Blogger Clare Dudman said...

Hello Vanessa, you must be the author of the girl in a glass bubble book (which I read and loved) a few months ago. Thanks for visiting.

And yes, it is, isn't it...

Sat May 08, 11:02:00 pm  

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