The Inconvenience of the Wings
The stories in The Inconvenience of the Wings inhabit
a imaginative landscape so expansive in conception that
it permeates the border between the natural and the supernatural. In "Outlaw," a group of feckless friends attempts to rob a gas station and causes an explosion worthy of a Quentin Tarantino scene, but the description juxtaposes violence with a poetic evocation of nature. In "The Bellwether," some friends, trapped in a vacation cabin by a blizzard, solve the problem of finding one of their company dead by placing her body in the freezing barn, necessitating the digging of a passage which is described in strangely beautiful language.: "Wind harried the snow in horizontal gusts. We channeled between the house and the barn: the snow even with my navel, the sky a vertiginous swirl, the air scented of cold." This extraordinarily powerful debut collection shows us that what seems beyond our ken is as much a part of the human experience as the tactile ground on which we tread.
My friend, Kurk Volk, designed the cover. I think it's terrific. I am lucky to have him as a friend. You can see some of his work here.
WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING
There's an owl that lives in a tree by my house. It's an eastern screetch owl. It's tiny. At night we hear him whinnying.
Haunting images and poetic prose flood this noteworthy collection.
Kirkus starred review (read the full review here!)
I'm a forever fan of Silas Dent Zobal, a direct descendant of the great stylists and provocateurs of arts and letters. Even still, I was staggered by the precision and virtuoso depth of this collection. The Inconvenience of the Wings is unsettling the way a too-good tarot reading is unsettling, lucid the way x-ray vision is lucid, original and deft and daring as only Silas can be.
Claire Vaye Watkins
With his clipped, staccato sentences, his pitch-perfect dialogue, and his often fragmented method, Zobal strikes me as a cubist and minimalist who achieves his effects by indirection and subtraction. One of the delights of his stories is that they are often intellectual puzzles, and one of the qualities I admire most about his work is its sheer intelligence. This is not the pedantic intelligence of yellowed note cards but the earnest, sharp and fresh intelligence that addresses the oldest questions–why do we die, do our lives have meaning, of what use is language. Zobal’s stories are distinguished by a rigorous authenticity, but they’re not solemn or morose. Many, in fact, are hilariously funny, others wildly inventive, others disturbingly violent. This is a stunning debut.
An opportunity to encounter a voice both fresh and resonant. Silas Dent Zobal’s story collection is a significant literary achievement by any measure.
Kim Van Alkemade
Piercing and unflinchingly honest, The Inconveniece of the Wings is a remarkable collection of short fiction by a significant new voice.
Foreward Reviews (see full review here)
The owl on this page is not an eastern screetch owl. I'm sorry about that. But I like it very much.