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Heads Or Tails

Heads Or Tails back

Lilli Carre


Page 45 Review by Dominique

HEAD OR TAILS is a collection of short stories, most of which have appeared in anthologies such as MOME. I had read some of her stuff there but on the strength of this book I am definitely going to have to ferret out some more because this is lovely! The art reminds me a little of Lynda Barry and the flow of the pages reminded me a little of Walt Holcombe in places, just in the way stuff sort of flows about and seems a bit bendy and floaty. The thing I enjoy most about Lilli’s work, though, is the way she weaves the absurd into the very normal with such a light touch that it seems neither silly nor confusing. She takes a seemingly ordinary snapshot of life and then diverts it so delicately that even the main characters don’t miss a step; they carry on towards befuddlement, trying their best to keep their footing.

The first story which really grabbed me was that of the man of principle who decides not to swerve from an oncoming car accident because he felt that, as a man of unwavering decisiveness, it would be out of character to do so. I loved the idea: his logic seemed so utterly stupid and yet to him you could see it made perfect sense. Similarly, the woman who finds her life has been stolen by an identical copy of herself just sort of accepts it and moves on to find a new life elsewhere. It’s not really in her nature to argue, better go with the flow, she figures.

All of which may sound a bit serious but it really doesn’t come across that way at all. Lilli’s style is so light that the stories have an air of playfulness and that touch of the absurd I mentioned earlier. In fact, I recently recommended this book to a customer who named their favourite film as Amelie (good choice!) precisely because it has that feeling of whimsy about it. So, if you like stories which look at life from a slightly different angle you may well enjoy this book. And if you do read it please let me know who you were rooting for, Heads or Tails?