I recently won a goodreads copy of Splinters by Joseph D’Lacey published by Timeline Books (0957440502 (ISBN13: 9780957440500) if you’re interested).
Splinters is very well named as a collection of twelve short stories with no connecting theme or style.
It was a very strange experience- reading this book. I suspect the fact that I was listening to Tom Waits – Bone Machine only added to the surreality of the evening. Right from the off it has, shall we say adult themes?
The unnerving sense of voyeurism that begins explicitly with the first story, Lenses, in which the characters watch each other watching each other in a series of clever but not pretentious stories within the story that fit together like nesting dolls until you finally see everything for what it is.
The tone has been set now, for the intimate tales of family and fear in Lights Out and Alter Girl. As I read on I felt the disturbing sense that I was spying on all of these characters, these couples with their children and their monsters.
The bizarre nature of the tales grows through the skin and body shedding to keeping a decaying girlfriend in the fridge. Yet I read on! I must have been utterly absorbed as I devoured Splinters in a single evening.