In many ways this book resembles a river, always moving, constantly changing, but with steady force sufficient to grind stone into sand. Like water, these stories dance through—not around—their subject matter, seeping into every crack and crevice, making connections in one scene and dissolving them in the next. Reading this collection feels like looking at the world through water—the angles don’t quite match what you expect and the light is diffuse, except when a ripple catches it and momentarily robs you of vision. Joffre’s characters are wispy and insubstantial in the way ghosts of past selves feel when we look back through the haze of time. If you turn your head or look away, they will shift into something else, something new. Something dangerous ... Ultimately, these stories are fairy-tales for a world that doesn’t know what it is anymore. They are reflections of a future that remains uncertain even as the world seems to fracture. Like water, these stories will seep into you, filling you past the point of bursting. For that, you will be grateful.
I was excited to see where her writing would take her, and her debut story collection, Night Beast and Other Stories, does not disappoint. It’s a mysterious and dark book, unafraid of confronting just how bleak life can be ... A sense of foreboding threads through these stories, and reading them is like walking through unlit woods, unsure of just what you’ll find. Joffre frequently writes about women who are in trouble, or just a step away from it ... Joffre joins an exciting group of women writers writing about the female body and desire. Fans of Carmen Maria Machado, Daisy Johnson, and Leopoldine Core will find a welcome new voice here. Joffre’s fearlessness to dive into the murky waters of longing makes this an original and startling debut.
Each of the 11 short stories in this collection shares a similar lyrical, hallucinatory air ... Readers looking for happy endings should look elsewhere, as the author does a masterful job of showcasing the danger, both literal and figurative, that women face by loving another person. Perfect for fans of Kelly Link and of Carmen Maria Machado’s Her Body and Other Parties, Joffre’s debut collection heralds the arrival of a new, exciting voice in fiction.