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Posted December 13, 2012
The only thing I had read by Holly Phillips prior to this book was her intensely atmospheric and creepy "Cold Water Survival", a modern-day Lovecraft-tinged horror story which is included here. That was enough to make me pick up this book, which is her second collection of short fiction. The rest of the stories (one of which is new to the collection) measure up to that remarkably high standard. Phillips writes absolutely gorgeous prose which is never an end in itself; the stories are densely imagined, sometimes ambiguous, always haunting. By coincidence I read this collection more or less simultaneously with Stephen Millhauser's new collection of short stories, "We Others". Millhauser is an ambitious and talented writer and "We Others" is excellent (especially for "The Wizard of West Orange", which appeared previously in "Dangerous Laughter"), but Holly Phillips is better. I can't believe she isn't more widely known and I plan on reading everything else she's written. Just buy this book and see for yourself.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.