This review is part of the AWW2017 Challenge
Julie Koh’s uproariously funny and deeply unsettling debut full-length short story collection is a biting satire of contemporary Australia. An insightful, witty, and highly original collection, standouts include the deliciously dark Cream Reaper – where ice-cream becomes a game of russian roulette – and the wonderfully absurd and melancholically lonely Slow Death in Cat Cafe where a morning wait for a coffee date ends in a secessionist movement.
It’s a difficult task to constantly surprise your reader, and Koh approaches her subject matter with an eye for the absurd in the everyday. I read this collection a while ago, but it has stayed with me in the way that the work of Borges, Calvino, and Levi does. It is a haunting collection that perfectly executes a scathing critique of the systemic racism and sexism of contemporary Australia while making you laugh out loud – and that is no easy task.
I cannot recommend this collection strongly enough. Koh is a writer to watch, and it will be wonderful to see her work develop over the course of what promises to be a sensational career.