|Published:||April 18th 2020||Pages:||224|
In the Beggarly Style of Imitation is written in contrasting styles and formats with a view to experimentation in narrative storytelling. The book is comprised of traditional short stories, an essay, a selection of aphorisms and an epistolary chapter. The first story is an unsentimental political romance about immigrants in Toronto in the eighties chronicling the story of Robert Borgloon, who suffers a head injury and retreats from political life leading to professional and personal disaster and culminating in homelessness. “Sentiments and Directions from an Unappreciated Contrarian Writer’s Widow” is a list of aphorisms that depict a harrowed life of living in the shadow of a boorish and oppressive author from the perspective of his widow.
“As to Birdlime” concerns a carpenter attempting to shirk his parental responsibilities so he can provide rich merchants with his services. “A Defense of Misanthropy” is an essay about the salutary benefit of avoiding the company of society. “The Slump” is about an opportunistic professor who exploits his students and “Selected Correspondence with Tatjiana Gotlieb-Ryder” is an epistolary chapter of exchanged letters between two art collectors whose correspondence over time erodes the foundations on which the relationship is based.