Meet Me in the Strange

Foreword Reviews - - Spotlight Reviews -

Le­an­der Watts, Meerkat Press (MARCH) Hard­cover $16.95 (260pp), 978-1-946154-15-6

In an in­tox­i­cat­ing swirl of fu­tur­is­tic im­agery and ex­is­ten­tial in­ner re­flec­tion, Meet Me in the Strange treats mu­sic and spir­i­tu­al­ity as one and the same.

Davi lives in a won­drous ho­tel in a city filled with odd­i­ties and beau­ties. In this fu­ture world, cul­ture has been in­fused with alien yet lovely cus­toms. A mu­seum in­cludes a si­mul­ta­ne­ously fan­tas­ti­cal and or­di­nary space ex­hibit; a record shop houses the most unique pop­u­lar mu­sic. Ex­hil­a­rat­ing prose de­scribes a world that is bright and bril­liant, with spots that are dark and ut­terly or­di­nary.

Char­ac­ters are also all about con­tra­dic­tions, in­clud­ing Anna Z—maybe spe­cial, maybe crazy— whom Davi be­friends be­cause of their mu­tual love of mu­si­cian Django Conn. She delivers long­winded speeches that could be re­ceived as ei­ther rants or ser­mons. To pro­tect her, Davi hides her away in the fam­ily ho­tel, us­ing hid­den rooms and tun­nels. Though this is done in the name of Anna’s pro­tec­tion, it’s also done to keep her.

The story is told through Davi’s eyes, though Davi is not broadly de­scribed; only mi­nor de­tails are in­cluded to flesh them out, like Davi’s taste in mu­sic. Davi’s gender is never re­vealed; they as­sume a sort of im­plicit an­drog­yny. This mys­te­ri­ous­ness is mir­rored in the turns of the prose, as the reader is al­lowed to be­long to an enig­matic world and ob­serve it with awe.

Meet Me in the Strange is a won­drous, alien tale, quite un­like any other story out there.

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