book review: Cove by Cynan Jones



COVE by Cynan Jones
Catapult, 2018


Cynan Jones is an author I’ve been interested in for a while, so I finally decided to pick up Cove for Novellas in November.  It’s under 100 pages and it’s the sort of book that raises more questions than it answers, so I’m finding it particularly difficult to review, but I also found it to be an incredibly worthwhile read.

Set out at sea, Cove follows a man in a kayak who’s been struck by lightning.  It’s a traditional survival story in that sense, but nothing about this book is straightforward; it’s equally about grief and memory.  This novella’s main strength is Jones’s prose style – lyrical, poetic, and disorienting – but that disorientation necessarily means that you’re signing yourself up for something of a rocky reading experience.  Which is my main complaint: for such a short book, it took me longer than I’d have liked to really get my footing with Jones’s style.  But days later I’m still thinking about this, and I’m really looking forward to reading more from him in the future, and perhaps revisiting this at some point.

You can pick up a copy of Cove here on Book Depository.

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