Friday, May 16, 2008

Fly on the Wall by Jason Brink

Privy to the details of all your secret moments, all your misdeeds, private conversations, and indulgences, the fly on the wall is neutral. It doesn’t care that you cheat on your income tax, it won’t stop you from jumping, and it won’t call the police when you eliminate the neighbor’s cat. But it was there.
That’s the opening paragraph of Fly on the Wall (ECW Press) by Jason Brink and illustrated by Jim Westergard. And it’s also at the core of the premise: the fly on the wall is privy to all those things. And more.

In some circles, this collection would be called flash fiction. In others, postcard stories. In still others, they would be punch fiction. ECW has chosen here to call them micro fiction, but you get the idea: some of the stories here are so short and sharp it would be more accurate to call them vignettes. For a sense of this, in Fly on the Wall’s 220 pages, there are 53 stories, each one beautifully illustrated by Westergard’s poignant pen.

Both author and illustrator live in Red Deer, Alberta, which should focus local attention on Fly on the Wall quite sharply. And rightly, too. In its own strange way, Fly on the Wall is an important and memorable book.



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