Shorter Lives by John A. Scott

Reviewed by
August 2020, no. 423
Buy this book
Michael Farrell reviews 'Shorter Lives' by John A. Scott

Shorter Lives

by John A. Scott

Puncher & Wattmann, $25 pb, 134 pp

Buy this book

Shorter Lives by John A. Scott

Reviewed by
August 2020, no. 423

John A. Scott’s Shorter Lives is written at an intersection between experimental fiction, biography, and poetry. It inherits aspects of earlier works, such as preoccupations with sex and France. As the title indicates, it narrates mini-biographies of famous writers – Arthur Rimbaud, Virginia Stephen (Woolf), André Breton, and Mina Loy – and one painter – Pablo Picasso – with interludes devoted to the lesser-known poet Charles Cros and the art dealer Ambroise Vollard. The narratives are largely distilled from more conventional prose sources. Scott gives himself poetic licence to fictionalise, and anachronise: Paul Cézanne’s collection of twentieth-century American paintings, for example.

Michael Farrell reviews 'Shorter Lives' by John A. Scott

Shorter Lives

by John A. Scott

Puncher & Wattmann, $25 pb, 134 pp

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