While the world Pflug creates is tensioned with useful allusions to oppression as well as cauchemar horror, the counter-placement of people next to unexpected objects and within strange settings is beautiful, bizarre and bleeding in a bright red way more dignified than a lie…
…We know these characters, they are quizzical, human, endearing. They write letters on air-sickness bags, Saran Wrap, pages torn from magazines. They are our punk roommates, they discuss arrangements, want to bring one more friend to sleep over on the hideabed couch.
-Susan Dyment, The Peterborough Examiner
Pflug’s impressive control of language creates a manageable framework for the imaginative content of her stories in which reality is shifted slightly, turned on its axis. Characters confront the impossibility of true communication with another person as their various relationships are mediated or perhaps enabled by letter-writing, drugs, and parallel worlds. The highly visual and often abstract prose makes for an uneasy reading experience in which the narrative begins to interrogate the reader’s perception of reality. This is the kind of reading that requires a little, god forbid, work – it forces thought and reconsideration and discomfort in a great way. It’s often the case that writing that seems difficult or challenging on a formal level manages to best articulate the complexities of human life, and Pflug’s collection is no exception.
-Katelynn Schoop, The Danforth Review
Buy After The Fires from you local independent bookseller, or click here.