Darkly comic, surreal and full of perceptiveness about human vulnerability and eccentricity, Frankie McMillan’s small fictions often duck and dive away from the reader’s expectations. With a poet’s sense of how single words or phrases ripple out with alternate meanings, and a dramatist’s feeling for how apparently small gestures reveal character, and how sudden, cataclysmic change can wrench us out of comfort, routine and unthinking assumptions, the author leaves us ransacking the language for finer genre definitions. This collection teems with both the animal world and a vivid circus of quirky human individuals. The pieces globe-trot all over the planet: from Russia to America to New Zealand; and yet often their piquant wisdom comes from how they bear down into ‘micro-geography’ of intimate relationships: the troughs, peaks, cliff-sides, the warm, still pools of recognition. Frankie McMillan is like a quietly outrageous Zen master, showing us human folly and idiocy, steering us carefully over the dark river of vulnerability that swells under it all.