Monday, 19 September 2011

Book Review: Maybe This Time

Maybe This TimeMaybe This Time by Alois Hotchnig

Publisher: Peirene Press

Category: Short story

Challenges: R.I.P. VI

Synopsis: A Series of dreamlike short stories.

My Thoughts: This book freaked me out so much that I had to stop reading it at bedtime. In fact, I had to finish it in broad daylight on a buss surrounded by people it was so braintwisty and nightmareish. Not those nightmares that have you waking up in the middle of the night in a sweat but rather the kind where you wake up in the morning with an uncomfortable feeling that stays with you the whole day. Where you ask yourself multiple times “what was that”. You can’t quite remember, but you know you felt very uncomfortable.

This was another beautifully written book from the ladies at Peirene Press. Despite being a translation the English flowed seamlessly, and as somewhat of a translation snob I have to applaud them for their continuously high  standards when it comes to translations.

As I said before this book is seriously braintwisty. It makes you question everything you see. At the start of each story you think you know what is going on, but by the time you get to the end you no longer have a clue, and somehow I can’t seem to shake the feeling that this is a metaphor for life.  We can never quite know what it is we are doing or what it is we are seeing.

Apart from the creepy feeling this book gave me I am having a hard time articulating my feelings on it. I think I need some distance to it, to work out what it was it was trying to tell me. And I think I need to read it again. Read it more carefully. Or perhaps less carefully. Let it speak to me in a way that maybe I didn’t this time.

I do recommend it for anyone who likes books that leave you with a creepy feeling. For me the creepiest story was probably “Then a Door Opens and Swings Shut”. I find the morphing of Karl and the doll to be particularly disturbing.

I would  like to thank Peirene Press for sending me a review copy of this book. It was a very interesting read.

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Copyright ©2011 Zee from Notes from the North. This post was originally posted by Zee from Notes from the North. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

6 comments:

Charlie (The Worm Hole) said...

The story about the doll was so strange! And I didn't have a clue about the first one. There's a definite freaky atmosphere to it.

Kailana said...

I have a song stuck in my head because of the title of this, but I can't really remember what it is because there is a television blaring in the background...

farmlanebooks said...

I love the sound of this - especially the brain twisty bit! The problem is that I don't normally enjoy short stories. I wonder if I should give it a try anyway - perhaps this will be the book to convert me?

irisonbooks said...

I have to admit your review made me glad I did not request this for review - I don't think I could have dealt with that kind of scary. Will still buy it (someday - when book buying ban is over) to keep the collection complete.

maryom said...

Definitely a book that plays with your mind. The dolls were especially freaky but most felt like nightmares!

parrish lantern said...

Liking the braintwisty description, I thought this was spooky but in a twilight zone kind of way, like walking down the street & taking a wrong turn & your in an alternate reality.