Strange Horses and Smoked Meat reviews

by flambardblog

Reviews continue to come in for Flambard books and there are two in the latest Warwick Review.

Jackie Wills reviews Olivia Byard’s Strange Horses, where she writes that the poet’s ‘quiet meditations insist you return to them‘. The rather excellent review describes Olivia’s technique: ‘She expands inwards, unravels an emotion and lays out her own close-up view of it. Alternatively, she approaches a subject sideways or from a slight distance.’ These are poems that ‘reward multiple readings‘ where the poet ‘can turn a sideways comment into a devastating narrative.’ Olivia’s second collection is available to buy from here.

Also (mostly) positive is the writer Nicholas Royle’s review of Rowena Macdonald’s short-story collection, Smoked Meat. Royle seems slightly unsure about the concept of a linked collection and lingers on this subject for much of his piece. Still, he heaps praise on Rowena’s writing style: ‘There’s no doubt that she’s a highly skilled writer, perhaps of the type whose work seems effortless but is far from it. She is very good at describing simple actions that can be devilishly hard to describe, but she does so with enviable natural simplicity.’ He winds up comparing Rowena’s book to the work of Charles Bukowski and Cris Mazza. If you’d like to make up your own mind about linked short fiction then you can download Smoked Meat for a small fee from here or order up a printed copy.