Om Late Work of Margaret Kroftis
A phenomenal debut novella to further establish the literary excellence of Dennis Cooper's Little House on the Bowery series.In The Late Work of Margaret Kroftis, Mark Gluth does something I've never seen another author do: he captures perfectly the feel of daydreams. Though everybody in the book daydreams, Gluth doesn't simply describe their thoughts; instead, he does something better and more brillianthe infuses his words with the deceptive simplicity and surrealism of the fantasies we dream up for ourselves. Like daydreams, his book is brief but powerful; like daydreams, it is both heartbreakingly hopeful and heart-stoppingly honest. It's a reverie that's a revelation. It is great.Derek McCormack, author of The Show that SmellsThe Late Work of Margaret Kroftis begins during the later days of Margaret Kroftis's life. She is a writer, living alone. As she experiences a personal tragedy the narrative moves forward in an emotionally coherent manner that exists separately from linear time. Themes of loss and grief cycle and repeat and build upon each other. They affect the text and create a complex structure of crosshatched narratives within narratives. These mirror each other while also telling unique stories of loss that are both separate from Margaret's as well as deeply intertwined.This groundbreaking debut demonstrates an affinity with the work of such contemporary European writers as Agota Kristof and Marie Redonnet, while existing in a place and time that is uniquely American. Composed in brief paragraphs and structured as a series of vignettes, pieces of fiction, and autobiography, The Late Work of Margaret Kroftis creates a world in which a woman's life is refracted through dreamlike logic. Coupled with the spare language in which it is written, this logic distorts and heightens the emotional truths the characters come to terms with, while elevating them beyond the simply literal.Mark Gluth's writing has previously appeared in the anthology Userlands (Akashic, 2007) and Ellipsis magazine. He was born in Cleveland, Ohio and now lives in Bellingham, Washington with his wife and their two dogs.Dennis Cooper's (series editor) novels have been translated into eighteen foreign languages. He has guest-edited sections of fiction and nonfiction for BookForum, Nerve, the L.A. Weekly Literary Supplement, and the Village Voice Literary Supplement. He is a contributing editor of ArtForum magazine and lives in Los Angeles.