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Crisp

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3.87  ·  Rating Details ·  23 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
Crisp confronts the unspeakable parts of memory, meditating on characters caught in isolation and struggling to make sense of grief, disappointment, and the occasional dinner party gone wrong. The characters in Crisp's stories don't always make sound decisions: a grieving widow pursues a priest, an unhappy wife whittles her husband to bits, and a nostalgic man has a ...more
Paperback, 1st, 157 pages
Published April 1st 2010 by NeWest Press (first published 2010)
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Scott Gray
Oct 11, 2011 Scott Gray rated it it was amazing
Robert Gray has crafted an exceptional anthology in "Crisp", a collection whose stories strike a balance between tightly focused slice-of-life tales and more complex narratives pushing into a magical-realist fabulism anchored in the grey skies and deadly ennui of the working-class Canadian west. In some of the other reviews of the book that i've read, people have expressed a preference for one side of that narrative balance or the other — but for me, the point of the book was the juxtaposition ...more
Mark Walma
Feb 02, 2014 Mark Walma rated it really liked it
There is a lot to love in this collection of short stories. Rob Gray writes lyrical prose of stunning beauty and creates images that are both original and unforgettable. The collection starts strong with "the bends" and reaches its zenith at about its midpoint, with the postcard story "flamenco", followed by "wabi sabi" and "seeds". My favourite, "wabi sabi", contains such memorable descriptions as "her husband was a mean man, gristle and bone with lost razors in the sock drawer and unforgiving ...more
Spondoolix
Nov 17, 2012 Spondoolix rated it really liked it
The stories of RW Gray's Crisp are both delicately and precisely written with a melancholy undertone that leaves the reader feeling nostalgic for a world of lost love and childhood memories. Yet it is the writing itself that beguiles -- almost every sentence opens out into an origami of subtle phrasing and beautifully rendered metaphor. There is much humous too in the comic circumstances of the human condition. Crisp is a first-rate collection from this talented, assured writer.
Rebecca
Jun 26, 2010 Rebecca rated it it was ok
Started out as a difficult read. Hard to follow the short stories. Further into the book, my curiousity peaked. It became more interesting to figure out the meaning behind the stories. I plan to go back and re-read a few chapters. This would be a good book to sit and read one short story at a time and discuss at a book club meeting to hear different interpretations.
Connie
I am setting this book down, I just finished the story "Crisp" and it has made me nauseous, can't go any further right now. This is definitely not what I was expecting.
M.A. Demers
May 05, 2011 M.A. Demers rated it really liked it
Shelves: own-and-read
Gray at his best when he strays into the fantastical.

Crisp is the first collection of Gray's short stories that I've read, and I have to say he's a very talented wordsmith. Gray possesses an excellent command of language: his interesting choice of words, surprising metaphors, and style were a constant treat. Much of his prose is very poetic, reminding me of my favourite writer, Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Gray also reminds me of another writer, Kafka, when Gray strays into the fantastical as he does
...more
Corey
May 17, 2011 Corey rated it it was amazing
In Crisp, no one questions how it is a woman can continually whittle a man into something new, how a fire can never be extinguished, why a trailer should suddenly up and slowly (oh so slowly) roll to the ocean and no one thinks to stop it. Beyond this, Crisp is a revelatory collection, delicate in execution and brutal in impact. Gray has a light touch, almost invisible, and his stories dance across the page even as they leave indelible impressions in the mind. Like the best short story writers, ...more
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topics  posts  views  last activity   
Title story available 1 3 Jun 02, 2011 07:09PM  
Gray nominated for literary award 1 6 May 05, 2011 10:58AM  
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R. W. Gray’s poetry and prose have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies. His first collection of short stories, Crisp, was published by NeWest Press. An award-winning filmmaker and screenwriter, he has had over ten short films produced. He lives in Fredericton, where he is a professor of film and screenwriting in the English Department at the University of New Brunswick.
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