Yuriy Tarnawsky's collection of mininovels is a surrealist account of the creative and destructive arts. Taking inspiration from music and the visual arts, Tarnawsky crafts a dense work of allusive prose and simple storytelling. The author interweaves reality with dreams and fragmentary thoughts, diffusing the elements of lives that are anything but mundane.
Both comic and frightening, the mininovels reveal the human tendency to experiment with whatever is given. Tarnawsky's language is elegant and careful, and his studied concentration of rhythm allows his work to transcend prose, nestling somewhere within the realm of musical composition. Reminiscent of Andre Breton, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and Dostoyevsky, this collection exemplifies Tarnawksy's claim: "The common thing about life is its uncommonness."
"There is much to be savored—and indeed
learned—from this wonderfully opaque, yet at times surprisingly
lucid and tender, collection of lapidary absurdities from Planet
Tarnawsky."—Mad Hatters' Review
"Tarnawsky's are the second opinions we seek, almost recognize, then do, for they are made of the sounds, power sources, bizarre jobs, people coming our way, fitted together both by us and a culture by turns demanding and uncaring if we sleepwalkers notice or not: alarming, intelligent, caught again and again in the grasp of the author's surprise and yearning." —Joseph McElroy
"Tarnawsky is the real artist. Like Blood in Water carries his experiment deeper into the American night, with work that is bright and moving and original. Everyone needs to taste these works of one of our most daring and powerful writers." —Steve Katz
"When I get rich I'll get a pied-a-terre on Yuriy Tarnawsky's planet. It's very wild on the surface and cool and calm in the interior. The palm fronds don't decay." —Andrei Codrescu
1. the church
As Roark crossed the street and continued walking along the sidewalk, in this block flanked on the right by a tall iron fence overgrown with ivy, he heard a loud noise coming from the building on the other side and immediately labeled it as a scream of a large group of people united in an uncontrolled, limitless feeling of despair. Intrigued, his heart beating with excitement, he stopped without turning his head in the direction of the building, his ear cocked so that it could best catch the sounds coming from it, and listened. The noise lasted another six or seven seconds, abruptly stopped, and then started up again to last about the same amount of time, in other words some ten seconds.
Like Blood in water
Like Blood in water