Dark, Witty, Poignant Observational Discourse On A City And A Person

Christophe Owens already has collected much writing kudos from debut collection, A Vortex of Securocrats, with authors, musicians and commentator heaping praise on its hellish visions of post-conflict Belfast.

To follow it ups Owens takes the reader back to the streets of the city in ‘dethrone god’. Here the comparison ends. The novella is chock full of humour, twists that provide the narrator with the opportunity to reflect on the changing face of the city.

Opening with a journey back home from a pub, the story sees fisticuffs outside McDonalds, avoiding the glare of amorous teens and a mysterious black taxi driver.

The contemplation of how as a child he marvelled when McDonalds and HMV first graced the troubled city, is a moment that many of ‘a certain age’ will recall well.

The narrator’s observation of friends, past and present, carries weight that there are no extraneous dwelling on features, other than commentary on their lives.

From midway through the appearance of dreamlike passages as interludes hint that there may be more to this tale than a straightforward dander home punctuated with wearied cynicism.
Indeed, the disturbing reality of the situation is revealed with just the right amount of hint before revelation.

It is clear that this novella is as much an ode to the uncomfortable truths of modernity and memories of the city that was. As much as it is dense as even a short read the adept use of humour that even non-natives will smile at, and within a few short paragraphs translate that wit into readers’ grimaces.

That careful balancing act brings dethrone god to the elevated status of a story that demands a second read to make sure you ‘get it’.

Dethrone God is available now via Sweat Drenched Press and Amazon.

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