I came across Neil Schiller's work a month or so back now, and have enjoyed dancing around the subjects of Bukowski and the Beats in the forums with him. Reading the work of people you have got to know is always a risky business, because as a reviewer you must be honest, and knowing someone you must be decent. But, 1. I had resolved to reda and review this before I knew anything about the man behind it, and 2. a good writer and a good person will never mind honesty.
Thankfully there is absolutely no cause for worry, because this collection is stunning. What Schiller does best is understatement. There is a quiet confidence in his prose, a simplicity, a levelness of tone that covers a depth and complexity of emotional content that is quite dazzling. This is the kind of writing I love, because it deals with life in all its messiness, but it does so without ever going down the road of bleakness and despair. it does justice to life's complexity but it does so without ever falling into the trap of "needing a good edit".
Thoroughly thoroughly recommended.
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