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3.89  ·  Rating details ·  70 ratings  ·  29 reviews
I'm not relentless. "Relentless" makes it sound like there's something called "relent" and that I'm lacking it. In that sense, I'm not relentless, but perhaps I'm unrelenting. I could relent if I wanted to. But he always has to die. I mean "always" in two senses: at all times and all of the time. I can't kill him all of the time. That would take too long. But all of the ti ...more
Paperback, 1st, 150 pages
Published February 4th 2020 by Clash Books (first published February 2nd 2020)
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Average rating 3.89  · 
Rating details
 ·  70 ratings  ·  29 reviews

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Sep 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I thought that during the day, if I saw anyone, they might ask me what I was up to, and I might be honest. I was going home, again, to watch other people's lives on the television screen and eat crackers. In the worst telling of the story, they offered me an alternative thing to do in the evening, and I would either have to do it or explain to the person that I preferred crackers and television to whatever they were offering. It wasn't fair to make me choose between these two bad options, so I d ...more
Bark  |  Laurie  |  LOHF
Hexis is a slim book but it wasn’t a quick read. It’s told in what I can best describe as a stream of consciousness but it’s a lot more than that and a lot more than my brain can comprehend but I enjoyed it quite a bit! It’s dark and painful and is sometimes even darkly humorous and it tells SO many truths about being a woman in this world we live in.

“He just sat there, the most natural thing in the world, drinking his fucking coffee like he hadn’t fucking ruined me.”

I don’t think we ever learn
Well Read Beard
Aug 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: my-books
This book is different, an intelligently designed map to where you want to go.
Oh? Sex and murder isn't where you wanted to go? Oh, you might be in the wrong place.

When I review a "smart" book, I want to write a "smart" review. Yeah, I can't do that. You get what you get.

What the fuck is Hexis? I read the long definition at the front of the book from Aristotle's Metaphysics. Then I looked up what I had hoped would be a simpler definition. I still don't really know. Here you go.
Hexis is a relative
Tracy Robinson
Mar 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
About 20 years ago, I read Milan Kundera’s Unbearable Lightness of Being for an upper level English major course. It came on the heels of Dr. Zhivago by Boris Pasternak, and I felt like I was wrapped in a whirlwind. Zhivago is a dense Russian novel of love and loss. Kundera’s book is lighter in terms of length but is mentally heavy. Why this trip down memory lane? Charlene Elsby’s debut novella, Hexis, is as dense and heavy as both Pasternak and Kundera’s books. It’s a head trip of love, loss, h ...more
B.R. Yeager
Dec 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Reading Hexis is like submerging the world in pale blue light. Like all my favorite fiction, it takes complete control over my perception of the spaces I move through. Its syntax hijacked me. Someone referred to the narrator as rambling, but I don't think that's true. She's thorough. She's aware of the role her consciousness plays in creating the world, but not to a degree in which she has any control over it. So she kills one man multiple times, or multiple men at one time, but the distinction ...more
Richard Martin
Feb 08, 2021 rated it really liked it
I usually start off my reviews with a brief blurb of the book to give readers an idea of what the story is about. ‘Hexis’ is a book that is nigh on impossible to blurb while simultaneously giving the reader an idea of what to expect, as it doesn’t have a story in the traditional sense. ‘Hexis’ is a 150 page-long philosophical stream of consciousness. I appreciate I may have lost a lot of you already with this intro alone, and I think that is an apt an introduction to this book as you are likely ...more
Audra (ouija.reads)
Feb 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Though this is a slim book at 138 pages, don’t let its size fool you. There is much more than meets the eye between these pages. The explanation of the title, a philosophical term, is an epigraph to the book, and the definition itself is obfuscating, serving as a warning of what the reader is about to get themselves into.

This book is not an easy read, nor was it meant to be. It doesn’t follow a typical narrative and in fact, I wouldn’t call it a narrative story at all. But if you are interested
Rayne Havok
Jan 07, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Oh man, I almost didn't finish this 3 times. The narrator is almost compulsively rambling the whole time.
Now I know why my husband zones out 3 minutes into a conversation with me.
It was great, reminded me a little too much of inside my own, very obnoxious head.
Ashley (spookishmommy)
"Every girl wants to be someone else. The commonality between them is that they hate themselves."

Hexis was an EXPERIENCE unlike any other. To fully understand what I mean, you must take this journey yourself. It wasn't until after I finished that I found out Charlene Elsby is a DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY. This explains so much. Basically, she's a genius and while I found that a lot of Hexis may have gone over my head, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I am eagerly awaiting more from Elsby.
John The  Crippledgimp
Well this book was different to say the least. This was a hard read for me but not because of violence or content. This book is like a OCD trip through the thought process of the female character rationalizing every thought of everything she was doing . This book was in ways like reading someone's consciousness and conscience at the same time if that makes sense lol. It was a really good read though. It's one of those books you'll either like it or be like meh but the writing was awesome. Althou ...more
Feb 18, 2021 rated it really liked it
There is a lot to think about in this slim novella. It's all the stream of consciousness of an unnamed person, and it's a lot to process and unpack. It's been a while since I've read any stream of consciousness writing, most likely since I read ULYSSES a few years ago. I think that novel turned me off of this type of writing, but I'm glad I read HEXIS because I feel that I have a new appreciation for it. It's not my favorite type of storytelling, but it definitely works for this novella. I think ...more
Benoit Lelièvre
Dec 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
Definitely not for everyone.

Hexis isn't a not in the conventional sense of the term. It's more of a phenomenological experience of a "self" talking itself through life and human interaction as if it were an alien. The narrator of this novel is clearly not an alien. She's a psychopath who kills her lovers, but it is written in a way that explores the gap between who she is and what she does. It is quite a challenging read that will appeal to soul-searching philosophy enthusiasts... like me, I sup
Autumn Christian
CLASH just keeps putting out great books. This is an odd little horror-comedy about a woman that can't stop killing her ex-boyfriends. It had Patrick Bateman vibes, but instead of railing against the constraints of masculinity, it's about the constraints of femininity and how it makes one woman tear at the edges of it. It's an unconventional narrative and oftentimes reads more like a philosophy tract than a traditional story.

Elsby has a hilarious, acerbic wit and writes like a razor. It's depre
Hailey Piper
Jun 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
To read the back cover text is to understand Hexis. There aren't names, overarching plots, only motive, memory, and the methodical peeling apart of behavior. "He" is every ounce of entitlement, disgust, and poison. Who he is has been ingrained in the past, as with most hauntings, and like a ghost, death is not final. He will be there, one way or another, as our narrator kills and discerns and works her mind at the world around her. Hexis is a strangely clockwork novella if a clock could be built ...more
Martin Llewellyn
Feb 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A book that is titled after an obscure term from Aristotelian philosophy is unlikely to be fated for a large readership. Hexis is not, nor was it probably intended to be, an easy read, describing as it does a nameless narrator’s repeated attempts to murder her childhood beau, it has the quality of a queasy nightmare. Embedded in “Hexis” is “Hex”, and Hexis is basically the story of a curse that (following Aristotle) could exist in the state between the narrator and the object of her thanatotic c ...more
Jessica Drake-Thomas
Dec 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Hexis is a stream of consciousness narrative about a woman who kills one man—the same man—over and over again. Her obsessive, detailed analysis of each killing, explaining how and why reminds me of Nicholson Baker’s The Mezzanine, in its first person narrative with extreme attention to detail.

At some points, I wondered if it was whether the narrator killing men who represent him, as serial killers tend to do. There is one person that they target, and they kill people who remind them of that per
Kieran Delaney
Jan 07, 2021 rated it did not like it
This book was irritating. There is basically no plot, just ten chapters of the protagonist doing the same thing with no explanation. That’s not clever or illuminating, as so many reviews seem to gush, it’s lazy and uninspiring. The prose is dense and impenetrable which buried some clever observations and thought provoking ideas, making the book all the more frustrating. I only finished this book because it was short but I was at the point of giving up several times, more out of annoyance than di ...more
Jun 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Trigger Warnings: Sexual trauma, abusive relationships, death, blood, mild gore, heterosexual sex

Full disclosure: I actually know Charlene Elsby in real life, and I'm about 85% sure we're friends on Facebook. (Which is why I'm going to be calling her Dr. Elsby in this review - because that's the name I know her by.) But I also don't think I've had a full conversation with her before and she doesn't know I'm going to review this, so make of that what you will.

Hexis is one of the best books I've e
Jun 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You can read my full review at:

Think of it like a mental exorcism – and I mean that in the best possible way. It may not feel warm and fuzzy, but by the time it’s done, you’re probably going to find yourself feeling a little freer.
David Tromblay
Feb 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Here is a compelling read from paragraph one. I wouldn't dare call this a page-turner. Instead, imagine if you will, getting shoved down a flight of stairs through a cyclic tale of violence and unraveling psychosis that lasts for 150 pages, interrupted only by unexpected bouts of violence as quick and to the point as a sucker-punch, only you're getting pistol-whipped, too, and the pistol goes off and hits center mass each time the stairs come to a landing without failure. Buy this one today. ...more
Feb 14, 2021 rated it really liked it
Disorienting in a way that is mostly quite thrilling, though occasionally tedious.
May 15, 2021 rated it it was amazing
While I am not 100% sure what to make of this book, I know that I was engaged by it. I enjoyed it even though it was painful to read in parts. This is not because the writing was bad, but because it was so good. This is definitely a book that I feel like I need to reread to fully follow (if that is even possible). Even among the difficult to read parts, there were some things that made me laugh out loud. There were things that made me think. Many things! And I am always pleased when I have to lo ...more
Alex Delogu
Mar 12, 2021 rated it it was amazing
This book functions more like music than it does writing. It's motivic variation on revenge and ontological restitution, a ritornello of hate. Logic appears as lived dehumanised thought. We never learn of the true hurt the protagonist has experienced in the past but it shimmers on the mosaic surface of every thought and action. A beaut! ...more
Jul 31, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is a story that perfectly portrays crazy, rambly girl-brain mentality. I don't ever mark my books but I am tempted to go through this again to highlight the parts that I loved & related to. I think it might read better as something to pick up & read bits of at a time since there isn't a linear time-line, but it was thoroughly enjoyable. ...more
Mar 16, 2021 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle-unlimited
I am officially done... DNF. I tried I really did!

For a small book this was hard going. Not in the content but the overall boredom I suffered and struggle to pick this up.

Not for me and I really thought it would be.
Elliot Harper
Apr 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
A thoroughly engrossing read with incredible attention to the detail and an interesting insight into someone’s mind. It felt at times like it’s both a short story collection and a full-length novella at the same time. Really enjoyed it.
Ter Caldwell
Jul 11, 2020 marked it as to-read
I don't know what that sinopsis is, but I'm here for it ...more
dnf 36% - not for me.
Jan 03, 2021 rated it it was amazing
How was I to know I needed some philosophical horror in my life? Maybe I did know and that’s why I bought the Hexis ebook after some man on Facebook mentioned he’d be reading it soon. This January is “ladies first” for me. My whole month’s reading list will be books of horror by women. If the authors are indie authors, even better. Why wait when this book meets all the criteria, I thought. I dove right in as soon as I bought it and could not put it down. I read through the night - highlighting m ...more
Greg Mania
rated it it was amazing
Mar 11, 2020
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