The web page of the ABPress based in Oxford and Sibiu, soon open for business: muses and misspells on its books. Randomly decrepit, stiff joints, possibly neo-bankrupt: so out of touch it needs help, but so analogue it cannot be helped. Nonetheless temperamentally enthusiastic, moderately irascible.
the ABPress has published two contemporary
novellas and two collections of short stories
MIRROR AND SILHOUETTE
77pp, B format paperback, £8
This is a tale that is of the shadow self set amidst the backdrop of Venice, and is concerned with the changing nature of identity and the inescapability of the past. Bryony, a rich and beautiful woman who has moved to Venice, invites an old friend to stay, and the story he tells her seems to trigger his disappearance. Bryony, in the meantime, falls for the pleasures and masquerades of Venetian life. At a masked ball she meets a fascinating stranger dressed as the Plague Doctor. In the end, she tells him her own story, which is entwined with that of the rich uncle whose wealth she has inherited: a series of life-affirming and nightmarish experiences.
This is quite a coup for the Press as Baret is a brilliant writer and I consider he will reach great heights. His recent lengthy novel The Fabrications received great reviews and praise. This title was published first by ABPress in 2016, but has been reprinted recently with a new cover.
“A stylish literary blend of Thomas Mann, Angela Carter and Patricia Highsmith. Baret Magarian writes of modern love and its pessimistic antagonists against the seductive backdrop of ancient Venice. This is an accomplished novella for literary and aesthetic readers.” – Sally Bailey, author of Girl With Dove
Olivia Stewart Liberty
71pp, B format paperback, £5
This is collection of five related short stories about a twelve-year-old child and her view of the world, shaped hitherto by her narcissistic mother. In these stories we witness her discovery and awareness of her independent self, and the beginnings of her rebellion against her mother – through her care for a cat, her choice of shoes, her sense of adventure and quest for adolescent lust – and her tilting at a true identity, as she gazes at graffiti: “what if everything you ever did could never be wrong?”
Olivia Stewart Liberty is an Oxford-based writer who has written for The Spectator, Independent and many other newspapers. Her first novel, Falling, was published by Atlantic in 2007 (Independent: ‘luminous’; The Times: ‘funny and moving’).
ODE TO JOUISSANCE
54pp, B format paperback, £5
Three short stories that explore nostalgia and eroticism in the fragments of modern Europe.
Dan Holloway is an Oxford based writer, publisher, poet and performance poet. His alt novel The Man Who Painted Agnieszka’s Shoes earned him a place on Mashable’s list of the top 100 writers on Twitter; his dark thriller The Company of Fellows was voted the ‘favourite Oxford novel’ by Blackwell’ Bookshop readers.
126pp, B format paperback, £6.00
“Do not be afraid, dear reader,” writes Galán in his afterword, “of this literary endeavour – if a reader is ever found… My purpose is didactic: to offer a lesson in aesthetics and art theory.” (It is vital to read this essay before the novel, which is why it is produced at the back of the book with no mention of it in a contents list at the front.)
Ilia Galán is a professional philosopher of aesthetics and theories of art, based at Carlos III University at Madrid.