This Is For You
A&R, $16.95 pb
These twenty-one stories have a pedigree; according to the customary list of acknowledgments, they have had a previous life littered across no fewer than twenty-six books, magazines, and journals, some of whose names are unfamiliar even to my local newsagent. I’m not sure these days if places of publication should properly be called ‘sites’, ‘topoi’, or ‘venues’. Such is the prevalence of dope in this book, however, that perhaps they could be called ‘joints’. But This Is For You is certainly greater than the sum of its parts.
This is not to disparage the parts. Wilding has enough wit to make an occasion of two or three pages. A story such as ‘Smoke-oh’ brings together the likes of a publisher, cab-driver, and public servant and lets them beguile each other for as long as it takes them to smoke a couple of joints.