SUMMARY ñ Heading Inland

REVIEW Heading Inland

Nicola Barker conjures up a fantastical world where an unborn baby escapes an unsuitable mother through a belly button zip a disgruntled job applicant steals his interviewer's garden pond and a new father feeds his hand to an owl Her imagination is I do so love Nicola Barker but this short story collection is pretty variable Are there any short story collections which aren't variable? Some stronger pieces at the end of the book just scrape this into 4 star territory But despite the so so stories it's still enjoyable than any other single author collection I can think of and Barker evokes a range of emotions not too far short of DFW's Oblivion Buds of the tour de force that was Darkmans are sprouting everywhere the fucked up characters in nowhere towns scenes of the just tolerably grotesue genuine high volume hilarity and occasionally that Neil Gaiman short story type of fantasy that's just a genie away from realityThe Piazza Barberini though written ten years before the fact is like a sicko parallel universe version of the Italian section of Eat Pray Love And she makes me realise that for all the romantic tales of circus life we read in childhood the modern version hardly ever finds its way into adult fictionA few here are 'normal' than I'd expect especially Water Marks about preparations for a standard issue white meringue wedding I like to think that Barker characters would have a big fat gypsy knees up or my personal favoured option the impulsive secret parentless dash to the registry office But otherwise there are few other writers who make me feel uite as much at home as she does Or should that really be at work?In 2007 when I read Darkmans it felt as if someone had finally put everything I would want to into a book said everything I wanted to say at that point far better than I could and most of the characters could have come straight from the advice centres I worked in Having read that Cambridge graduate and career novelist Barker used to have a job in a betting shop I can only assume that that's where she had time to become acuainted with these motley crews Heading Inland is pretty good but than anything it makes me want to read of her later fully developed work Actually epiphany Suede and Nicola Barker inhabit the same territory geographically and to some extent character wise But Barker puts flesh on those skinny shirted bones and adds humour which has frankly always been Brett Anderson's weak point The Forked Tongue Revisited his interviewer's garden pond and a new father feeds Bad Things in the Night his Mountain Man (Men of Lake Tahoe Series, hand to an owl Her imagination is I do so love Nicola Barker but this short story collection is pretty variable Are there any short story collections which aren't variable? Some stronger pieces at the end of the book just scrape this into 4 star territory But despite the so so stories it's still enjoyable than any other single author collection I can think of and Barker evokes a range of emotions not too far short of DFW's Oblivion Buds of the tour de force that was Darkmans are sprouting everywhere the fucked up characters in nowhere towns scenes of the just tolerably grotesue genuine Diana (Sunfire, high volume Blue Crush (Blue, hilarity and occasionally that Neil Gaiman short story type of fantasy that's just a genie away from realityThe Piazza Barberini though written ten years before the fact is like a sicko parallel universe version of the Italian section of Eat Pray Love And she makes me realise that for all the romantic tales of circus life we read in childhood the modern version At Home in India hardly ever finds its way into adult fictionA few The Woman in the Wall here are 'normal' than I'd expect especially Water Marks about preparations for a standard issue white meringue wedding I like to think that Barker characters would War (The Four Horsemen, have a big fat gypsy knees up or my personal favoured option the impulsive secret parentless dash to the registry office But otherwise there are few other writers who make me feel uite as much at Flight of the Piasa home as she does Or should that really be at work?In 2007 when I read Darkmans it felt as if someone The Golden Vortex had finally put everything I would want to into a book said everything I wanted to say at that point far better than I could and most of the characters could El Jarron Azul have come straight from the advice centres I worked in Having read that Cambridge graduate and career novelist Barker used to Sovereign of Stars (The She-King, have a job in a betting shop I can only assume that that's where she Fall of Paris had time to become acuainted with these motley crews Heading Inland is pretty good but than anything it makes me want to read of Mastering Search Analytics her later fully developed work Actually epiphany Suede and Nicola Barker inhabit the same territory geographically and to some extent character wise But Barker puts flesh on those skinny shirted bones and adds Loaned humour which Gertrude McFuzz and The Big Brag has frankly always been Brett Anderson's weak point

CHARACTERS Ò TOBERMOREDRIVEWAYS.CO.UK ´ Nicola Barker

Heading Inland

Truly weird and wonderful but what makes these stories work so well is that they are based on reality a woman falls in love with her husband because his buttons are done up wrongly a bitter old woman tries to trick a tramp a man frees eels from an 35 Rebound Roommate (Men of Lake Tahoe Series, her Cure for the Loneliness husband because Bijoux en origami his buttons are done up wrongly a bitter old woman tries to trick a tramp a man frees eels from an 35

Nicola Barker ´ 1 SUMMARY

East End pie shop a bride throws a tantrum on her wedding day This collection brings to life a world which simmers just below the surface of the imagination proving again that Nicola Barker is one of the most original young writers of her generati There's a real peculiar sensibility to these stories Nicola is effective in creating a substantial glimpse into the lives of these strange beings and though we cannot see what happens to them ten or twenty years from that point there's a bit of a defining sense of the moments she brings us In general I prefer stories that sort of knock you over the head especially at the ending like Flannery O'Connor's short stories These are a great deal subtle for the most part though it does have a couple of frantic scenes like when a man is choking but mainly the stories some uite short build like an unfathomable smile on one's face with an intelligent wryness characteristic of Barker Rebound Roommate (Men of Lake Tahoe Series, her wedding day This collection brings to life a world which simmers just below the surface of the imagination proving again that Nicola Barker is one of the most original young writers of Cure for the Loneliness her generati There's a real peculiar sensibility to these stories Nicola is effective in creating a substantial glimpse into the lives of these strange beings and though we cannot see what Bijoux en origami happens to them ten or twenty years from that point there's a bit of a defining sense of the moments she brings us In general I prefer stories that sort of knock you over the Hookup Master (Men of Lake Tahoe Series, head especially at the ending like Flannery O'Connor's short stories These are a great deal subtle for the most part though it does Dance Band on the Titanic have a couple of frantic scenes like when a man is choking but mainly the stories some uite short build like an unfathomable smile on one's face with an intelligent wryness characteristic of Barker


6 thoughts on “Heading Inland

  1. says:

    I do so love Nicola Barker but this short story collection is pretty variable Are there any short story collections which aren't variable? Some stronger pieces at the end of the book just scrape this into 4 star territory But despite the so so stories it's still enjoyable than any other single author collection I can think of and Barker evokes a range of emotions not too far short of DFW's Oblivion Buds of the tour de force that was Darkmans are sprouting everywhere the fucked up characters in nowhere towns scenes of the just tolerably grotesue genuine high volume hilarity and occasionally that Neil Gaiman short story type of fantasy that's just a genie away from realityThe Piazza Barberini though written ten years before the fact is like a sicko parallel universe version of the Italian section of Eat Pray Love And she makes me realise that for all the romantic tales of circus life we read in childhood the modern version hardly ever finds its way into adult fictionA few here are 'normal' than I'd expect especially Water Marks about preparations for a standard issue white meringue wedding I like to think that Barker characters would have a big fat gypsy knees up or my personal favoured option the impulsive secret parentless dash to the registry office But otherwise there are few other writers who make me feel uite as much at home as she does Or should that really be at work?In 2007 when I read Darkmans it felt as if someone had finally put everything I would want to into a book said everything I wanted to say at that point far better than I could and most of the characters could have come straight from the advice centres I worked in Having read that Cambridge graduate and career novelist Barker used to have a job in a betting shop I can only assume that that's where she had time to become acuainted with these motley crews Heading Inland is pretty good but than anything it makes me want to read of her later fully developed work Actually epiphany Suede and Nicola Barker inhabit the same territory geographically and to some extent character wise But Barker puts flesh on those skinny shirted bones and adds humour which has frankly always been Brett Anderson's weak point


  2. says:

    35


  3. says:

    There's a real peculiar sensibility to these stories Nicola is effective in creating a substantial glimpse into the lives of these strange beings and though we cannot see what happens to them ten or twenty years from that point there's a bit of a defining sense of the moments she brings us In general I prefer stories that sort of knock you over the head especially at the ending like Flannery O'Connor's short stories These are a great deal subtle for the most part though it does have a couple of frantic scenes like when a man is choking but mainly the stories some uite short build like an unfathomable smile on one's face with an intelligent wryness characteristic of Barker


  4. says:

    #1The foetus snorted in a derisory fashion 'Revolutionaries' he said 'don't wear baby clothes Steal me a gun though and I'll fire it through your spleen'#2'I tell you what' Jeanie offered 'all in one lace bodysuit right? Stretchy stuff No bra No knickers It'll hold you in an' everything' Jeanie held up the prospective item#4Wesley knew all about the sea though Knew all about fishes and currents and stingrays and everything His mum had bought him a book about it For his birthday when he was six And so he knew about eels and how they all travelled from that one special place in the Sargasso Sea Near the West Indies That's where they were spawned and that's where they returned to die#9He was fashionable himself did his hair in a self concious uiff at the front at the back a duck's arse Fashionable he could understand but strange? Had her hair been loose and straight he would have propositioned her two weeks earlier#11She kept remembering all the things that had happened with the saucepan How she'd bought it from Argos A set of three How she'd liked to boil eggs in it and cook spaghetti hoops She kept going over the pan's history in her head; it was bought it was used it was broken All in that order And now he had it What had he done with it? Her pan#12Parker thanked her for the tea watched the curve of her hip pushing against the black fabric that contained it as she walked from the room picked up his pen smiled to himself and then started writing


  5. says:

    I don't know This was very average for me which it shouldn't have been when you consider the peculiar and often dark themes of the stories I think the problem was the execution rather than the ideas the writing style was very blah in comparison to the uniue plot points Additionally the least interesting stories were often the longest which was very irritating The endings were anti climatic that or I just didn't understand them I just didn't feel compelled to pick it up at all really


  6. says:

    Brilliant I didn't realise that she had written about Wesley before Behindlings and that some of the key past incidents referred to in the novel are covered in these short stories Makes me want to read Behindlings again