Isolation Read #47

Published posthumously in 2018, it contains five short stories: The Largesse of the Sea Maiden; Starlight on Idaho; Strangler Bob; Triumph over the Grave; and Doppleganger, Poltergeist, three of which are among the best I have read for years.

Regular topics for Johnson are covered: incarceration in a prison and a psychiatric unit; drink; drugs; various types of attempts at programmes of withdrawal and recovery; burned out man-hood; the bleary end of the day seen through a smudged shot-glass; “woman troubles”; a poet obsessed with disinterring the bodies of Elvis Presley and his dead at birth twin, Jesse; and at base a wearied existential crisis that just edges out the boredom of it all.

The language and pace are pitch perfect. The prose is pared to the bone.

Pristine, beautiful and elegiac.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: