Hollow: A Novel, by Owen Egerton
Hardcover: 240 pages
Publisher: Soft Skull Press (July 11, 2017)
Hollow: A Novel, by Owen Egerton was waiting for me in my mailbox. It was inside a mangled USPS Priority Mail cardboard envelope barely held together by a rubber band. Half the book and most of the envelope were waterlogged.
Though I was upset, this was somehow perfect. After reading this sad and extraordinary story of persistence, shutting down, reaffirming yourself, and living through all of it coming out not necessarily on top, but wining by the shear force of life, the waterlogged book was a perfect metaphor for the the sadness of the tale inside the book.
I loved this book. At times, though, I had to put it down. Several times, actually. I had to shut it and put it aside for a few minutes. Then it would call to me, and even though it had just made me cry, and had dug right inside my own heart and exposed some of my own demons to me, I had to go back, pick it back up, and start reading again.
With every sentence, Egerton builds his tale, and pushes his narrative forward. With every sentence, Egerton packs one emotion on top of another, and releases them, sometimes all at once with just a word, sometimes by peeling them away slowly… and all of it with a magical sense of humor which keeps you completely captivated.
Egerton is a funny man, and he’s never been afraid of shock just for the sake of shock–just attend any one of his many performances to find out. As an artist, he’s simply not scared of much. He takes chances.
In this new novel, Egerton outdoes himself. He takes it to the next level. Every word, every image, every scene, comes together and takes you in, mangled or not. There isn’t anything in this book that isn’t necessary to this story.
Full disclosure: The book was sent to me by the publisher free of charge in exchange for an honest review. You’ve just read my review. After reading the waterlogged version of HOLLOW: A NOVEL, I went online and purchased a new copy.
Pretty please, United States Post Office, let this one not be taken in by the floods. I got the cleverness of it all the first time around, and this time I’d like to have a copy for my personal library.
Peace & Love
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