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Nouns of Assemblage Paperback – July 30, 2011
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Top Customer Reviews
People having little interaction with such works will find this to be a fair sampler of what to expect: an ideal crash course in flash fiction that will either endear you to the art indefinitely or forever repel you. If you're like me and looking to expand your horizons a bit, this also fits the bill.
I have a terrible bias against experimental narratives and stream-of-consciousness writing (which, I think, "Nouns" veers into every so often) but I still found several stories to be particularly entertaining; a few were very great; and, naturally, a few caused me grief. Still, in ANY anthology, those are pretty good marks.
If you get the mezza platter when you go out to eat at the middle eastern joint, you should get this book. It's a sampling of 63 (63!) new and emergent writers writen to their assigned noun and its assemblage.
A skulk of foxes indeed.
In a way it is a literary "Five Obstructions", the famous film where Lars Von Trier puts "obstructions" on the director Jorgen Leth, in order to see how the work changes and thus the man himself. But where that film was ultimately a love letter from Lars to Jorgen, Nouns Of Assemblage is really a book of homework assignments.
The stories tend to err on the side of "weird" and "nihilistic". There are pieces of high-school-drudgery, nostalgic surrealism, attempts at metaphysical commentaries, and plenty of ironic prose poems fashioned into flash fiction.
This is not to say that this book is bad. It is plenty instructive as a writing experiment, a good work for other writers to gauge where their art falls in comparison, and there are a few truly exciting writers between the covers whose work is worth the seeking out.