About Little Is Left To Tell
• 284 pages
• Publisher: Campanile Books
Little Is Left to Tell is the haunting novel by master fabulist Steven Hendricks. Enter a nocturnal world where the unreal is seen on a liminal horizon of fading memory, illuminated by partial understanding and lyrical fictions. Virginia the Wolf writes her last novel to lure her daughter home. A rabbit named Hart Crane must eat words to speak, while passing zeppelins drop bombs. Mr. Fin tries to read the past in marginalia and to rebuild his son from boat parts. A novel that bridges between dreamscape and reality, Little Is Left to Tell is entrancing and enthralling.
“In Little is Left to Tell one scene is quietly illuminated and then that illumination glides to the next, equally quiet and wondrous. Like a dream that inhabits an entire life, even a life of reading, this is a deeply rich and surprising novel.” — Amina Cain, author of Creature
“A tale about the ravages of old age, the weight of the past and bunny rabbits. Debut novelist Hendricks tries to apply the whimsical mood of fairy tales to the mildly experimental fiction at play here, and he largely succeeds despite the grim nature of his story. …A vivid story that uses the language and metaphors of myth to reflect on the unkind nature of age and perception.” — Kirkus Reviews
About Steven Hendricks
Steven Hendricks lives in Olympia, Wa. with his wife and two children. He teaches writing and book arts at The Evergreen State College. His work has appeared in The Denver Quarterly (2000), Conjunctions (2001), Fold: The Reader ( 2002), and The Encyclopedia Project Vol. 3 (Sidebrow, forthcoming). He earned his MFA in Writing at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2000. Little is Left to Tell is his first novel.
I’ll be honest – it took me about 30 pages before I figured out what was going on in this book. And even that’s not accurate, because even then I still wasn’t quite sure what was happening, but I figured out that the main story is not about the bunnies, but about Fin. Once I got that part down, I enjoyed it a whole lot more.
That said, this book was incredibly difficult for me to get into. Every time I’d get invested in Fin’s story, it would switch to the bunnies. Then I’d get invested in the bunnies, and back to Fin. The transitions were abrupt, and it usually took me a minute to realize the story had switched again.
I think that’s deliberate, though.
Fin is dealing with dementia, and I think Hendricks deliberately wrote in a somewhat disjointed style to further draw the reader into the situation. I hope that’s the case, anyway. Gradually, you begin to realize the pain Fin is going through, his struggles, and his grief. The stories become ways to cope, and ways to escape.
This book is a challenge to get through, and since I haven’t actually finished it yet, I’ll refrain from saying too much more. Hendricks is clearly a gifted writer. It’s beautiful in parts, emotional in parts, but requires an investment that I think will turn a lot of people off. It’s not a happy book by any means, but I think there’s power there if this is your type of story.
Thanks to TLC Book Tours for the chance to join this tour. Check out the rest of the tour stops here!