Richard Bon's Reviews > Mad To Live
Mad To Live (Deluxe Edition w/ Bonus Tracks)
Richard Bon's review
Mar 20, 2011
Each story has its own unique flavor and characters, but themes of childhood, parenthood, marriage and infidelity, self-image, and the formative ways in which fathers and mothers and uncles and others affect each other and the children in their families, these themes are ever present. Sometimes subtle and other times direct, I marveled at Brown's ability to connect with my emotions in such (very) short stories. I like the way he structured the collection as well, five or six stories separated into categories of "what is," "what for," "what not," and "what if." The stories in the final section, the "what if" section, were a new experience for me in flash fiction - stories in which the author interacts with his own characters, addresses his relationship with readers, acknowledges and expands upon his place in the world even as he tells a fictional tale - a daring experiment from Brown and one that he conducted brilliantly as I found myself entertained, surprised, in awe. I'm so happy PS Books re-released this previously sold out collection so that I could enjoy it.
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