Motion Sickness is a flash novel consisting of 55 chapters of exactly 500 words each and accompanied by a wood-cut like, scratchboard illustration that follows one young woman’s humorous and poignant misadventures in the worlds of employment, friendship, dating, birth control and abortion. The illustrations are dark and somewhat whimsical as is the text.
Penelope, the twenty-year-old narrator is a guitarist who writes some lyrics, has a good colour sense and a social conscience. She has kicked a drug habit and is now mainly drinking and sometimes jamming in after-hours clubs as well as writing letters of protest. She finds herself increasingly attracted to Theo, a slightly older bass player who turns out to be married and who shares a similarly poetic take on the world, but who, unlike her, sticks with people and jobs. A drugged threesome involves the very sexy but potentially violent Stan who becomes a frightening stalker. But Theo remains a stable anchor and it slowly becomes clear to both of them, as well as to Theo’s wife, and Stan, that their developing relationship is not to be ignored. A smart, engaging novel about a young woman finding her way in the world.
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Praise for Motion Sickness:
“The format of the novel perfectly reflects and enhances the perspective of the narrator — the disjointed, disconnected vignettes recreate the feeling of being twenty, self-focused, overly imaginative, and drunk.”
–Meghan Bell in Room 106