Jaeggy, a master of the short form, again creates something unforgettable with these otherworldly stories ... Told in Jaeggy’s characteristically jagged prose, these dark stories of madness, loss and murder are urgent and evocative. Central to each are surreal images reminiscent of paintings by Leonora Carrington or Max Ernst: 'her hands, like the claws of a crustacean, clutched at a little mound of dust.' This is an intensely beautiful and original collection that bristles with a strange and often disturbing magic.
Jaeggy is a master of the short form; her essays are charged with a nearly combustible vitality, her stories without fail are compact and devastating. Long after the pleasure of reading is over, their little hooks tug at — what is it, the heart or the mind ... Most importantly, Jaeggy’s prose is superb (and as superbly translated) as ever, her characteristic desolation as self-possessed as it is recherché,
Susan Sontag once admiringly called Jaeggy a savage writer. You need to be, to write these stories about loners and orphans with such levity. Fleur Jaeggy is like Edward Gorey without the monsters, or Lemony Snicket without the slapstick, though she can be funny, in a sinister way ... A genius of rich, terse prose, Jaeggy writes paragraphs that are gorgeous labyrinths. One sentence pulls ahead, the next circles back to reexamine something from earlier, and the next one might dead-end or take you somewhere entirely new — but to the characters and the reader by extension, it all happens simultaneously ... She achieves more in a paragraph than many can pull off in an entire story; there’s very little out there that resembles Jaeggy’s dark and surreal intensity.