cover image Delirium Eclipse & Other Stories

Delirium Eclipse & Other Stories

James Lasdun. HarperCollins Publishers, $15.95 (200pp) ISBN 978-0-06-015550-6

In a story titled ""Dead Labor'' (``Capital is dead labor,'' said Marx) that is more like a morality tale and as methodically plotted, the narrator has pledged his dying ``mentor'' to complete the writing of a final project, a Marxist analysis of culture. Concurrently he is offered a job as restaurant reviewer for a glitzy magazine along with the pleasures of the flesh provided by its female editor. Between her enticements and the flashy night life of London, his will dissolves until nothing is left of his former seriousness. So too is the affair fated to end in inertia and void. In the nine stories of this first collection by a resourceful English writer in command of a supple, lyrical style, reality and fantasy, imagination and its perversions come close to fusion. Class and caste, money and sex are the themes and points of reference of these involving tales. (July 2)