Fiction at a Glance

Bird Eat Bird

Bird Eat Bird
Katrina Best

Insomniac Press
$19.95
paper
168pp
9781897178942

On a sunny day in a park, with an eclectic and vocal crowd as witness, an unlikely event occurs: a pelican eats a pigeon. So begins Katrina Best’s Bird Eat Bird, an effective and witty first collection of short stories. Six cringe-inducing tales, Best’s stories are close examinations of brief and often disastrous moments in her characters’ lives. In just a few pages, Best is able to convey a setting and establish tension between characters. These characters are often weird, but Best gives them enough attention that they are also believable. Absent of cliché, the details that make up and surround her characters give them life: “Meredith watched, spellbound, as the pack- age of tripe shimmied towards her. It was the only item on the conveyor belt moving autonomously, a quivering cube of translucence, its slimy off-white contents encased in see-through plastic.” Best’s commitment to her characters’ trials makes this collection a compelling, though sometimes uncomfortable read. mRb

Vanessa Bonneau reads a lot of kids’ books.

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