Inspired by Louis Aragon’s obscure surrealist text, this new adaptation by R J Dent proudly presents… [insert drumroll] the one and only, Jean-Fucque Le Cocque, a large, disembodied penis and his Parisian adventures — his satisfactory encounters with female passengers on the Metro, his small room in a hotel frequented by prostitutes, and his reason for buying a hat. (Mon dieu!)
When Daniil Ivanovich Yuvachev steps in front of a trolleybus and is killed, he immediately regrets not looking both ways before crossing the street. It’s one of many deaths Daniil faces in these eighteen absurdist tales. From a mind that wanders too far at lunch, and a madcap chase through St. Petersburg, to a clock that stops time whenever it’s observed, these stories trace not only the lives and deaths of the hero, but the author’s impossible nostalgia for a time, a city and a writer he never knew. Filled with existential humor, this masterful collection explores the thinly-veiled boundary between sense and nonsense.
“The Many Lives and Countless Deaths of Daniil Ivanovich is an absurdist gem in which Jason E. Rolfe channels the best essences of Gogol and Dosto evsky while authenticating his own unique voice. Uncanny, whimsical, and smart, these interstitial stories and vignettes reminded me that literature isn’t dead yet after all.” —D. Harlan Wilson, author of Outré and The Psychotic Dr. Schreber
“Whether you find this funny or frustrating, I would recommend a few sips of this book from day to day. Taken all at once, it can induce mental chaos, but taken one story at a time, it can promise wide smiles. Jason E. Rolfe might be the most specialized of specialist writers, but he deserves a wide, non-specialized readership.” —Mark Fuller Dillon, author of Ice and Autumn Glass
“Jason Rolfe’s precise, inventive stories are a treat. He makes them seem easy, which they’re not; he makes them seem funny, which they are. What’s more, they have a tasty Canadian tang to them. Here’s to CLOCKS!” —Doug Skinner
CLOCKS is literary Vaudeville, a stage where slapstick philosophy performs a high-wire act — wrestles with time and mortality. This major collection of comic tales is laced with insight and absurdist angst.
Rolfe’s fiction simultaneously sets the clock forward and back and gives new meaning to the word nonsense.
A new book by Doug Skinner is always cause for celebration, but this collection of 40 short stories calls for a month-long festival of merrymaking.
In SLEEPYTIME CEMETERY you’ll discover a world of ostensibly human specimens behaving in peculiar and unpredictable ways. However, they are often recognizable in a manner we dare not admit. Skinner’s dark humor is deceptively playful and childlike, and that makes our bursts of laughter all the more disturbing.
These wickedly funny tales are guaranteed to disconcert and astonish.
DOUG SKINNER has contributed to Fate, Fortean Times,Nickelodeon, Weirdo, Black Scat Review and other periodicals. His translation of G. B. Nazari’s THREE DREAMS was published by Magnum Opus Hermetic Sourceworks in Glasgow. Black Scat Books has published many of his translations from the French, including SELECTED PLAYS OF ALPHONSE ALLAIS and THE ZOMBIE OF GREAT PERU by Pierre-Corneille Blessebois, as well as a collection of his drawings, THE UNKNOWN ADJECTIVE & OTHER STORIES, and a deluxe compendium: THE DOUG SKINNER DOSSIER.