PositiveZYZZYVAFrom an artistic point of view, I must commend the translator, Tess Lewis, for resisting the urge to force Angot’s narrative into coherent and clear prose. Rather, her English translation of Incest strives to replicate the same frazzled reading experience as the original French ... it will be for English readers to decide whether navigating Incest’s murkiest passages and disturbing subject matter is worth the price to experience Angot’s searing vision.
Carmen Maria Machado
RaveZyzzyva\"This collection of stories utilizes elements of gothic, speculative, and horror fiction to examine life in a female body and its relationship to sex, food, disease, and the supernatural … Machado’s use of horror amplifies the bizarre pains, joys, and restrictions women face … In Machado’s work, emotions materialize and materials become embedded with emotions. She also has a fascination with pandemics, which she explores in not just ‘Real Women Have Bodies’ but elsewhere … By taking to its ultimate (and extreme) conclusion the significance of inhabiting a female body, Machado makes the supernatural and madness feel eerily familiar.\
RaveZyzzyva\"The sense of danger comes from the way Rowe weaves this family’s ecosystem into the wider southeast Australian wilderness, lending the story a feeling of urgency and rawness. Every time you settle into the familiar narrative of suburban linoleum depression, a spider the size of a hand crawls across the ceiling. In this book characters can’t go for a walk without crunching cicada husks beneath their shoes, pass a fence without seeing a strung-up fox (both a trophy and a warning), or hear gunshots without wondering if someone finally got the giant black cat that’s been stalking the area. Rowe doesn’t use quotation marks, so dialogue blends into characters’ thoughts and descriptions of the environment. This stylistic choice, rather than muting the dialogue, turns the ambient volume up: the crunches, crackles, and gunshots ... A Loving, Faithful Animal is the story of a family trying to rediscover their identity after the abusive presence they once molded themselves around has disappeared. Rowe depicts her characters searching in the wake of their former selves for the moments, objects, and places they can use to construct their new identities. Rowe’s way of emphasizing the landscape to express her characters’ inner worlds proves both contemplative and thrilling.\