The WEIRD (37)

Real-Time Review continued from HERE.

The WEIRD: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories
Edited by Ann & Jeff VanderMeer
First published in Great Britain 2011 by Corvus, an imprint of Atlantic Books Ltd.

2 Dec 11 – another 2 hours later

Flat Diane – Daniel Abraham

“…stringing tother the events of her day with and after and after and. No matter if no two facts led one to another -”

[I seem to remember at least one of the Reva-Menders had (or still has) an alien ‘doll’ (I forget its name) that was sent worldwide travelling, either alone in care, or accompanied by its owner, for photographs of it in situ to be taken alongside real people and real touristy scenery… and such a phenomenon (including this story) seems to be very significant to one of the prevailing themes of this book: the oblique or unfocussed consideration of travel-becoming-a-chore etc. that seems to thread many of the stories.]  — This story tells of a single father — with a teenage daughter — who postally distributes (as a kind act to his daughter) life-size tracings (Flat Dianes) of her on paper (as opposed to electronic images by email?) – and the results seem to indicate some proof  of real book-lovers’ views concerning the vast magical differences between paper books and ebooks even if their texts are identical – with Diane herself, in real-time, “outstripping” the disseminated paper images piecemeal – just like the tentative hindsight effect of real-time reviewing. All with many anxieties about the ‘political correctness’ of touching as part of parentage etc, and marital problems, that beset our society; this is a story that has this central haunting image of vicarious travel even to the point of portable voodoo and innocence’s desecration….  Just don’t understand how a photo and a postmark can lead to a specific address in Seattle.  Perhaps that’s the point. Either I have misread something or something has misread me. I’m never up to continuity plumbing. A touching story with a provocative trigger about the Weird: a teetering on the edge of some winter of the soul (tied to a centrally memorable absurd, surreal, anxiously emotional and/or variously inscrutable image / trope  – or send-receive-(mis)delivery of creative synchronisation / randomness (“some things don’t stop just because they’ve ended.” – Cf Shepard, Ellison, VanderMeer….). Symbiosis by snail mail. Snail not spider. “He leaned over and kissed the crown of her head where the bones hadn’t been closed the first time he’d held her.”

Continued as The WEIRD (38) HERE.

Index of this whole real-time review HERE.


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