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The Story of the Y

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4.25  ·  Rating details ·  8 ratings  ·  6 reviews
In an attempt to interview forgotten outsider musician Y. Bhekhirst, Alex, an aspiring rock journalist, travels the backroads of Mexico along with his girlfriend, Primavera, his best friend/drug dealer Larry A.K.A Lobster, and the ghost of a singer trapped in his own record, John. Along the way they discover towns that disappear overnight, waiters without mouths, cartel bo ...more
Paperback, 144 pages
Published April 12th 2019 by Cabal Books
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4.25  · 
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 ·  8 ratings  ·  6 reviews


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Vincenzo Bilof
Apr 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
For any bizarro book to catch my attention, it has to have some unique quality that separates it from the rest while not seeming to wallow in its attempt to be unique. One particular concept that attracted me to Ben Arzate’s debut is the artist in pursuit of another artist; it’s very much a “meta” storytelling device, but it’s something that I instantly connect to.

Arzate serves up the witty dialogue against a surreal backdrop. The Story of the Y could have easily been served up as a play, and i
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Lori
A bizarro road trip novel for the, ahem, record books. Oh, c'mon, it's the perfect way to introduce Ben Arzate's debut novel, which is written as a surreal, fictional account of a wanna-be music journalist named Alex who, in an attempt to make it big, decides to hunt down the reclusive and relatively unknown (though wholy non-fictional) artist Y. Bhekhirst.

Stylistically, Ben is a less-is-more kind of writer, so the 134 pages read like a fever dream, jam-packed with minimalist dialogue and break
...more
Zakary McGaha
Apr 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
Ye ole Ben Arzate loves serving up surreal scenarios in a funny, deadpan way. This book, in particular, functions as an indie-comedy road trip movie type of thing in fiction form. If you collect rare, obscure art, you’ve probably had the fantasy play through your mind of searching out the weirdo who made said art object and having an adventure while doing so. That’s what happens in this book, but it happens in a weird, unique, humorous way.
4/5 stars.
Bram Riddlebarger
Apr 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-read-2019
A wild road trip to Mexico with more turns than a long line at the bank. Good stuff from Ben Arzate. Recommended along with his excellent short story collection The Complete Idiots Guide to Saying Goodbye.
Zach
Apr 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
It doesn't seem like there are many picaresque roadtrip novels nowadays, but this is a fun revival of the form. Arzate's book follows a cast of off-kilter characters into a Mexican magical realist landscape teeming with comic violence and astrally-projecting Zapatistas. Worth checking out for anybody who's ever gone to absurd lengths to indulge a minor curiosity, or readers who wish Christopher Moore's books were a bit edgier.
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Ben Arzate writes and he lives life. Sometimes he forgets to the latter.