Monday, January 10, 2011

[Review] Monstrous Creatures by Jeff VanderMeer on Rise Reviews

It's good to start the new year with a review. I interpret it as a sign of productivity for the whole year. It's also a good thing that I start the year with a review of a non-fiction collection written by none other than Jeff VanderMeer. You can see the whole review [HERE].
In short, Monstrous Creatures by Jeff VanderMeer can be best summarized by the book’s own subtitle. It’s deceiving in its simplicity and forwardness. The reader will read essays, articles and reviews in order to participate in this tour. At 254 pages, Monstrous Creatures doesn’t frighten anyone with its length. On the contrary, it only contributes to the fake sense of immediacy, of reading this book in one sitting.

Monstrous Creatures is a beautiful chimera of ideas and opinions. VanderMeer goes for a 360-degree expedition of fantasy in all of its manifestations as well as through significant periods of its evolution. Wherever the fantastical seeps in, be it in books, the act of writing, architecture, art or even nature, VanderMeer follows, documents and then reports with some of the most spectacular and sophisticated turns of phrase I’ve seen in non-fiction.

4 comments:

Carl V. said...

Sounds great, especially after being on a Jeff Vandermeer high because of The Third Bear collection.

Harry Markov said...

I saw that review. I did skim through it, but decided that I had to NOT ever read or else I might obsess over it and then bemoan the universe I did not have it.

Carl V. said...

Several of the stories in the collection are available free online and I put the links in near the end of the post, in case you are interested.

Harry Markov said...

That would actually harm me more as I would then obsess even more. Hah, I'm a nutjob. :D

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