Synopses & Reviews
If anything's going to save the characters in Amelia Gray's debut from their troubled romances, their social improprieties, or their hands turning into claws, it's a John Mayer concert tee.
In AM/PM, impish humor and cutting insight are on full display. Readers tour the lives of 23 characters across 120 stories full of lizard tails, Schrodinger boxes, and volcano love. June wakes up one morning covered in seeds; Leonard falls in love with a chaise lounge; Betty insists everything except flowers are a symbol of her love for her husband; Andrew talks to his house in times of crisis. Written every morning and night for two months, these brief vignettes (50 to 100 words) recall Donald Barthelme in their whimsy and subtle yet powerful emotions.
An intermittent love story as seen through a darkly comic lens, AM/PM mixes poetry and prose, humor and hubris to create a truly original work of fiction.
"A series of brief, anecdotal episodes featuring occasionally recurring characters marks this delectable debut from Gray. Numbered from 14 to 133, and appearing on facing pages marked AM and PM, these vignettes explore the love tangles of characters like Betty and Simon, listening through the window to a screaming argument by neighbors on the street and discussing whether they should react as Raymond Carver or Superman, or Martha and Emily as they test glass tabletops (and each other) while shopping for furniture. Muted, humorous epiphanies occur: Carla, a woman with two daughters, is moving out on Andrew and trying to pack up her glassware in newspaper ('softened by the humid air') without waking him; later, she dates the Amazing Chet, who makes his living guessing people's weight. Friends Missy and Chastity do yoga and debate the attributes of attractive men, while Hazel, on the facing page, ponders her universal 'need to express something inside of her.' At moments screwy, prickly and pleasantly surprising, Gray's short shorts deliver youthful snapshots about being nuts in love." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)