Rhys Hughes was born in 1966 and began writing from an early age. His first short story was published in 1991 and his first book, the now legendary Worming the Harpy, followed four years later. Since then he has published more than thirty books and his work has been translated into ten languages and he is currently one of the most prolific and successful authors in Wales. Mostly known for absurdist works, his range in fact encompasses styles as diverse as gothic, experimental, science fiction, magic realism, fantasy and realism. His main ambition is to complete a grand sequence of exactly one thousand linked short stories, a project he has been working on for more than two decades. Each story is a standalone piece as well as a cog in the grand machine. He is finally three-quarters of the way through this opus.
Mirrors in the Delugeby Rhys Hughes
The fun, as ever, starts with the title of each story - gently leading an unsuspecting reader into
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Mirrors in the Deluge is a collection of 32 unrelated stories that take elements from fantasy, science fiction, horror and other genres and give them a lateral shift. Like much of Rhys' work these quirky tales between them encompass parody, pastiche and puns.
The fun, as ever, starts with the title of each story - gently leading an unsuspecting reader into preconceived ideas and expectations; expectations that are soon spun around, turned on their head (or other extremities), and pushed in an unexpected direction. Thus, a saunter merely through the contents page is already a hugely entertaining experience and one more akin to savouring the hors d'oeuvres of a grand feast than consulting a list of shortcuts into a literary tome. In fact, the gastronomic metaphor serves us well here; the courses on offer range from tantalising tuck to a gourmand's repast, but never mere vittles - perhaps the way to enjoy this book is to digest one story, three times a day (four if you're a halfling who needs second breakfast), rather than trying to gorge on all the available delights and delicacies at one sitting. To complete this gourmet's guide, a tempting sampling of the stories must include:
The Soft Landing, a unique story told from the perspective of a photon;
Travels with my Antinomy, how do you solve a paradox when you're part of it?;
Vanity of Vanities, the internet achieves consciousness and takes over, but with very different consequences than you might imagine;
The Fairy and the Dinosaur, in which a fairy can't find what she wants for her picnic in the goblin market, is offered cloned prehistoric plums but turns to a time-travelling robot to go back to the age of the dinosaurs and eat an original plum.
Other titles to tempt you include The Martian Monocles, The Prodigal Beard, A Dame Abroad, The Unkissed Artist Formerly Known as Frog, The Goat That Gloated, The Taste of Turtle Tears, The Bones of Jones, and The Haggis Eater.
- Elsewhen Press
- Publication date:
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- Barnes & Noble
- NOOK Book
- File size:
- 518 KB
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