Getting Jesus in the Mood

Anne Brashler, Author Cane Hill Press $8.95 (129p) ISBN 978-0-943433-06-6
Hokey and pretentious, this debut short-fiction collection by a co-editor of StoryQuarterly relies heavily on sexual motifs. Harriet of ``You Turn You Around'' accompanies a stuttering Lemont to a prostitute; we learn that on a wall hangs ``a crude picture depicting an oversized rooster chasing a naked girl with large round breasts that looked as if they were flying,'' but we're never clued in about the nature of Harriet and Lemont's relationship or why she is motivated to come along for the ride. In the title story, a hideously obese woman who was sexually abused by her brothers as a child eats the raw dough of the communion wafers she is baking: ``Oh Lordy, Lordy. The body of Christ inside her at last. When he pressed against her nipples, He made them harder than the Devil ever did.'' The eight-year-old narrator sleeps with her father in ``Everywhere My Father,'' and fondles his ``nest with a finger curled like a baby bird''; then a fire breaks out in their home, firemen rescue them, and ``I wondered if our bed was burned. I wondered if my father's nest had burned.'' ``Wild Strawberry, a Snap-On Button Shirt, the Best She Ever Made,'' about a recovering alcoholic who marries a woman who is going blind, is affecting but it hardly compensates for the rest of the volume. (July)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1991
Release date: 01/01/1991
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