Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Guest review: Sinkhole by Leo X Robertson + Free book

Sinkhole by Leo X Robertson
Published by Cardboard Wall Empire on the 24th September 2014.

Where to buy this book:
Download the ebook for free from its author via Dropbox

Guest review by Harry Whitewolf
Harry Whitewolf is a poet of contemporary cutting-edge pop prose and a storyteller of true crazy travelling tales that read like fiction. I have enjoyed both his travel memoirs (my reviews here) so was delighted when Harry agreed to share this one of his reviews on Literary Flits. You can find out more about Harry and his writing on his own website, www.harrywhitewolf.com

Harry's rating: 4 of 5 stars

The characters in these stories live in disconnected worlds, inside their own heads, trying to create meaning for themselves. In Dead Cats on Motorways, a father tries to work out if the family cat has been run over before his son comes home. In The London Bus, an ordinary woman gives in to her compulsion to vie for the attention of apathetic bus passengers, going to deeper and darker lengths each time. The Badass London Ex-Bitches and the Case of the Creepy Revenge Porn Guy is the story of three women who band together to find out who put their naked photos online. These stories and more are about what goes wrong when we fail to communicate.

Harry says: "“D’you know what I liked most about Sinkhole?” I asked a fictional version of Leo X Robertson who was lingering around in my mind. He was looking around for a bar, and poised to know what I had to say about his book of short stories.
“No,” said Leo.
“You’re a writer who thinks outside the box! That’s what I like!” Leo then smacked me hard in the face for using such a trite term as ‘outside the box’.
“I’m sorry,” I said, wiping my bloody nose. “Would the term ‘blue sky thinking’ have been more appropriate?” - at which point Leo brutally beat me to within an inch of my life.
 “I’m sorry,” said Leo. “I’m not a violent person at all, but you went over the line.”
“Nnn-duh-stood,” I tried to reply through my broken throat.

Two weeks in an intensive care unit gave me the time to reconsider how to approach the review, so I was very thankful for having been placed there. I had learnt my lesson. There would be no more references to boxes.
When I finally got out of hospital, I returned to my flat only to find that fictional Leo was waiting for me. He simply asked,
“So how did writing the review go?” I proceeded to tell him:
“I had trouble writing about that one titled that black and white box… sorry, I mean square, and circle symbol thing. I mean how do people insert such symbols into text? It’s beyond me. Anyway, that one I can’t name- I really liked that. That was great fun.”
“Which others did you like?” he asked.
“Dead Cats on Motorways, as you would expect from such a title, was hilarious and expertly executed. Histopia felt like it should have been one of those books that was already a classic, but written in this day and age, it just worked best as it was; in its short story format. ‘Twas spot on.”
“Oh good. I’m glad you liked it,” said Leo.
“The London Bus was probably my favourite story, and #Awkward infuriated me: well done.”
“Great!” said Leo. “Any negative criticism?”
“Well, it didn’t feel quite as accomplished as your later books. I felt like some stories were too long whilst others were too short. Sometimes it felt like I was rummaging through a big folder of your thoughts for stories, rather than a finished product, but then I kinda liked that too.” “And you promise me you didn’t use any terms like ‘outside the box’?”
“No. I promise. Look here…” and I showed Leo the end of the review I’d written.

It said: ‘If you like the likes of Chris Morris and Stewart Lee, you’ll most certainly like this book. It’s crass, clever, cutting, biting, poignant, original, dark and deliciously funny. Fall into a Sinkhole. You won’t regret it.’
“Hmm…” said Leo. “It sounds a bit advertising bullshitty to me.”
“Well it doesn’t matter. You’re not even the real Leo,” I said. “You’re just a figment of my imagination.”
“Oh yeah!” said Leo, and abruptly disappeared."

Thank you Harry!

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