Their power to unsettle is unmatched

Tue 22 Dec 2020 - Filed under: Not a Journal., , | Leave a Comment| Posted by: Gavin

Never Have I Ever cover - click to view full sizeTamsyn Muir sent this along after reading Isabel Yap’s forthcoming debut collection, Never Have I Ever:

Never Have I Ever proves Yap the master of both the grand and the everyday. In each of these hard-hitting, incredibly assured stories, Yap shows how deft her hand is by sliding effortlessly from marriages and monsters (‘A Cup of Salt Tears’), to future anxiety and food in a near-future Manila (‘Milagroso’) to the uncertain future of grown-up magical girls (‘Hurricane Heels’); her ghost stories terrify as much as they comfort (‘Asphalt, River, Mother, Child’) and are so woven into the fabric of our real and human lives that their power to unsettle is unmatched; imagine if M.R. James had known the precise 1990s desire to own a Baby G . . . But where Yap consistently dazzles is her unsentimental, tender, evocative and brutal examination of the life and interiority of young women and girls: the innate monstrousness of growing up in the shoes marked ‘woman’. A masterclass collection.” — Tamsyn Muir, author of Gideon the Ninth