O'Clock

Quim Monzo, Author Ballantine Books $15 (100p) ISBN 978-0-345-31668-4
Winner of Spain's 1981 Catalan Critics' Prize, the 16 stories in this collection are premised on unlikely but realistic events whose effect is fabulous and intriguing. In ""Rings,'' a genial young playboy becomes obsessed by an unknown woman who makes appealingly obscene phone calls to him every evening at eight. ``The Salmon Lady'' is a womanwith legs ``that could make for total happiness of whomsoever might share in them''who drives a fellow train passenger into ecstasy by rubbing thighs with him for a few hours, and then departs for her husband and children. ``The Letter'' is to a lover from a former girlfriend who gloats in detail about how wonderfully she and her new beau make love and doubts the recipient has the courage to make good his threats to kill himselfa letter delivered to a man who has just committed suicide. Despite the undercurrent of bewilderment about women, these humorous, macabre and energetic stories are a delight to read. (April)
Reviewed on: 03/04/1986
Release date: 03/01/1986
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