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26Lies Reviewed (believe it or not)

Three years after it was published, Russell B Farr at Ticonderoga Online reviews 26Lies--

Twenty-Six Lies/One Truth - Ben Peek

Wheatland Press, 2006

152 pages

RRP: US$14.95

ISBN 0-9755903-8-3

Reviewed by Russell B. Farr

This book bills itself as an “autobiography of a man who has been nowhere, done nothing and met nobody”, and with such a low peak to aspire to, accomplishes this. It consists of a number of short pieces, sometimes arbitrarily grouped around the alphabet, that overall form several plot lines. Thrown into the mix are examples of literary fraud.

The strength of the work lies in using the structure to create little moments of suspense while telling essentially uninteresting tales. This ends up being a bit like being fed day-old white bread a piece at a time when you’re not sure if you feel hungry or not.

Twenty six lies/one truth didn’t set my imagination racing, nor force me to get my brain out of first gear. It’s a competent book by a competent writer, but I get the impression it has been written entirely for the author’s own enjoyment.

Wheatland Press have a number of excellent, essential titles in their catalogue, but this isn’t one of them.


--though I suppose calling it a review might be a little kind.

Years ago, if I remember right, Ben Payne told me of a conversation he had with Farr, deep in the days when the Australian Spec Fic Scene used to get in an uproar every time I said anything slightly critical about their work, or their awards, or perhaps even the socks they wore. Anyhow, Payne said that Farr planned to write a scathing review of 26Lies, to let loose on it--it's been a while, so I'm not real sure on the details now, but at any rate, here it is, that piece of venom building in the back of Russell B. Farr's throat since 2006.

*Gently pats Russell on the head*

There, there.

Link.

(crossposted)

Comments

ex_benpayne119
Jan. 18th, 2009 02:17 am (UTC)
Fuck me, man, who remembers what happened in 2006?

From what I *do* remember though, I think a *lot* of people were planning scathing reviews of your work around about that time :-)
robinpen
Jan. 18th, 2009 03:01 am (UTC)
Well, I was planning one, but then someone told me I'd have to read it first.
ex_benpayne119
Jan. 18th, 2009 03:05 am (UTC)
Preposterous!!

The day I have to read a book to review it....
cassiphone
Jan. 18th, 2009 05:43 am (UTC)
I planned to write a *really* scathing review of 26 Lies... but then I liked it. BASTARD.