The Atlas Review


Arcade Seventeen, a chapbook by Megan Giddings

Image of Arcade Seventeen, a chapbook by Megan Giddings

In Megan Giddings’ Arcade Seventeen, a chapbook collection of flash stories, there are many ways to dream. Whether it involves sex dreams with a centaur, talking chives, a brotherly love for brie cheese, or a heron’s wings that whomp and flash like cop cars, these stories ignite in us small ineffable furies we can’t bear to extinguish. Giddings’ writing, sprouted from a dark lyricism, wraps its cool tendrils around our sense of narrative and gifts us kaleidoscopic vision even as it reminds us of the dim glow reality casts just behind its artifice. In “Again and Again and Again,” she writes,

“More than once, my father said to me: you need to stay quiet, you need to stay safe. It was night, it was late afternoon, and we were, we are always, black. Their lights were red and ugly blue, not heron blue, behind us. Those were times I remembered my life could easily become a leftover crumb. Something to be flicked off a shirt. A reflex. Routine. My father held my hand. I didn’t pull away.”

You’ll leave this collection dizzy and wanting to return to its rare atmosphere. Arcade Seventeen is furiously intelligent, meandering with utmost intention. You will feel oddly at home in this surreal universe.

Available now for purchase!