‘Some Great Project’ by Stuart Evers

Story Title: ‘Some Great Project’ by Stuart Evers
Collection/Anthology?: Ten Stories About Smoking (Picador)
Date Read: 22nd July 2011
Briefly: With his father’s health failing rapidly, the narrator reveals an interest to him, in building a family tree. His father warns him off the idea, and does so again while on his deathbed. Does the son take heed? Of course not (the term ‘dog with a bone’ springs to mind :)), and a growing need to scratch a ‘big project’ itch, coupled with a chance discovery in the loft, sees the narrator setting off on a quest to trace his family’s ancestry.
Afterthoughts: This, my first foray into the fiction world of Stuart Evers, has been a interesting one. It’s a good story, and one which sticks wholly with the theme of the collection, yet not in a overpowering way, or with any irrelevance. I like the way in which Evers writes. He’s not flowery or rambling as say Trevor or Van Booy would be, and neither is he overly figurative or metaphorical, like Blake Butler or Kelly Link, perhaps. No, with regards to this story at least, Evers is very straightforward in his prose, and he writes with much brevity. He’s straight to the point, very much like Hemingway or Carver, which makes him something of an uncomplicated, yet powerful writer to read. Of course it’s too soon to see whether terseness is Evers signature style, but it’s going to be plenty interesting finding out. Regardless, this is a nice opener to the collection.

Rating: ★★★½☆

This story was read as part of a review of the Ten Stories About Smoking. If you want to find out more about this collection and its author then I invite you to pop along to my forethoughts post for this title. I also encourage you to make a trip over to the publisher page for the book.

About Rob

Rob, a self-confessed bibliophile, is without any hope of rehabilitation. He gets unnaturally excited over anything book-shaped, and if book sniffing were a crime then he would have been locked up years ago (which wouldn't bother him in the slightest provided his cell was lined with books).