Monthly Archives: March 2015

In The Sprawl Of The Outer City The Stench Became Narcotic (China Miéville, ‘Looking For Jake and Other Stories)

In China Miéville’s London there are shadows, and there are shadows. There are the shadows thrown by what we see and what we assume, and what we’re familiar with enough to no longer notice. The long stretch of non-sunlight cast … Continue reading

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Definitely A New Century (Steven Soderbergh’s ‘The Knick’)

The deepest incision made in The Knick, Steven Soderbergh’s debut expedition into television drama, is into the social. The world in which the Knickerbocker hospital exists is consumed by fin-de-siècle desperation; a simultaneous brushing-under-the-carpet of the barbarism of the near-past … Continue reading

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He Knew The Pain Would Come Later (Nathan Ballingrud, ‘North American Lake Monsters’)

There is a moment at the end of the eponymous story in Ballingrud’s collection where our principal character, Grady, returns to the implacable corpse-thing he and his daughter discovered the day before on the lake shore. Previously, the dead thing … Continue reading

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Of Clerking And Of Slaughtering (Alasdair Gray, ‘Lanark’)

Nicola Sturgeon wants Scottish legislation by Scottish MPs. A rightful request, given the political fissure caused by the not-inconsiderably close result in the 2014 independence referendum. Given the iron-clad confidence of the SNP’s political swaggering since, you might be mistaken … Continue reading

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