Art au gratin
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Noria Jablonski: Human Oddities

Human Oddities, Noria Jablonski 2005 Shoemaker & Hoard!

At one point or another, just about everyone feels like a reject, outcast, or freak. I know I have. It can be something obvious, like a scar or a cast. But so often it’s a self-imposed sentence, invisible but to our own eyes, whispering about how we don’t fit in.

Maybe that’s why I like Noria Jablonski’s collection of short stories, Human Oddities. It’s about folks whose bodies set them apart. Haven’t we all felt like this? Jablonski’s characters introduce us to their world, showing us their perspectives as well as the ones that surround them.

In One of Us, Hussein and Hussan are once-conjoined twins. Their misfit status is nearly ignored by them (and their grade school companions). Hussan’s narration is quite matter-of-fact, even in the aftermath of his brother’s relatively minor concussion accident and it’s effects. One of Us contrasts with much of the book’s feeling of pain which soaks most of the characters. Not that there’s anything wrong with either viewpoint, Human Oddities paints them all in a valid way.

“Valid.” The opposite of “invalid”. Hm. Isn’t that how a freak feels? Invalid?

Check out these links to Noria’s site: http://www.redroom.com/author/noria-jablonski

and also a review I liked: http://bookotron.com/agony/news/2005/11-21-05.htm (scroll down a bit).

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One Response to “Noria Jablonski: Human Oddities”

  1. It sounds really interesting. I definitely know that feeling. I hope reading it would not make me more sad.


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