Archive - November 27, 2012

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Review of Mark Brazaitis (Guatemala 1991-93) The Incurables

Review of Mark Brazaitis (Guatemala 1991-93) The Incurables

The Incurables by Mark Brazaitis (Guatemala 1991–93) University of Notre Dame Press $20.00 233 pages 2012 Reviewed by Susi Wyss (Central African Republic 1990-92) As a Peace Corps volunteer in the Central African Republic in the early 1990s, I once accidentally ingested a triple dose of Fasigyn to treat a case of giardia. That night, my mind slipped into an alternate world in which I hallucinated that rats were coming through my window and trying to crawl under my mosquito net. That experience instilled in me an enduring empathy for people struggling with mental illness, and taught me just how thin the membrane is that separates sanity from madness. In Mark Brazaitis’ fifth book, a deep and introspective collection of stories called The Incurables, this membrane seems especially thin and permeable, and his varied cast of characters manifests symptoms of varying degrees of madness. A school coach turns into a . . .

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