It Will End with Us

Sam Savage. Coffee House (Consortium, dist.), $12.95 trade paper (150p) ISBN 978-1-56689-372-5
In this slim, impressionistic tale of a South Carolinian family in decline, Savage (The Way of the Dog) again displays his distinctive, and late-blooming, voice. (His first novel, Firmin, about a bookstore-dwelling rat, was published when he was in his 60s.) Here, a woman named Eve Taggart sits at her mother’s old desk to record the “figments, mental images, and phantasms” of her past: her eccentric mother, who only wears lavender dresses and harbors unrealized literary dreams; the games played by her boisterous brothers around the deteriorating family home, ironically named Spring Hope; and her own coming-of-age in the “busy world that I have never been quite entirely a part of.” Eve’s narration, broken into a series of short, associative paragraphs, is uncertain, wry, and poignant as often as it is bizarre: “Birds cannot be considered neurotic. Any bad feelings they have they get rid of by flying, I imagine.” The Southern, shabby genteel setting and strains of familial madness recall Faulkner, but Eve’s “inventory of tiny things” more resembles the off-kilter, experimental style of Beckett. The novel’s fragmentation and insistence on the fictitious quality of memory never lessen the emotional impact of this portrait of a mother and daughter, each compelled to write and each “ill equipped for life.” (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 09/22/2014
Release date: 11/01/2014
Genre: Fiction
Ebook - 150 pages - 978-1-56689-380-0
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