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Book Review

Book Cover

All That is Solid


Author: Rosanne Rabinowitz
Publisher: Eibonvale Press
33 pages
RRP: £3.99
ISBN: 978 1 908125 93 4
Publication Date: 18 October 2019

All that is Solid, written by Rosanne Rabinowitz, is another in the series of Chapbooks (#13) published by Eibonvale.

The story has less fantastic elements than that usually published by Eibonvale, but this makes it no less unsettling. If anything it is more so, being rooted more in reality.

This short novella has us spending time with Gosia, a foreign national in Britain and her reaction, or rather the racist reactions, she has to suffer following the Brexit vote. This is not presented in a preachy way nor is it overladen with condemnation, rather it present one woman’s experience.

For Gosia, it is not one specific thing, but a series of smaller events which make her feel distinctly unwelcome. Men, and it is predominantly men, who feel somehow empowered to verbally and even potentially physically attack females, confront her on the street and on the bus.

Her certainties about her life, pre Brexit vote, have vanished, creating a fearful anxiety in Gosia as apocalyptic as Yeats's The Second Coming, her centre can no longer hold. This sparks her previous anxieties about the space between atoms, the uncertainty and illusionary quality of reality.

The story does well to paint such a full picture of Gosia, her past, her troubled present. I was wondering whether the story would just slowly come to a close, but instead Rabinowitz provides a creepy twist to her tale.


Charles Packer

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