A Matter Of Attention

by Torrance Stephens


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Date Reviewed:  May 30, 2005

Pay Attention
A MATTER OF ATTENTION is a novella about an interesting time in the main character's life.  Told in first person, readers are introduced to Gash, a writer who uses his craft to write stories, poems and social commentary. He has an eclectic group of friends who can expound on Nietzsche and the current state of Wall Street, as well as use street vernacular in its rawest form.  One must also understand that although Gash is a writer, he is also a street pharmacist with friends who don't care about a little recreation that alters the mind.
One night while out with his friends, Gash meets Margarita.  No longer will he spend as much time with his friends, because he finds himself consumed by Margarita.  She brings another level to his personality and for a time in Gash's life she holds a prominent place.  However, as with all good things there comes bad.  Gash is caught in a lover's triangle, he disconnects from his friends and forgets his first love, writing.  It will take a dramatic event for Gash to finally return to his true self.
A MATTER OF ATTENTION is not a simple read; it's an intellectual assembly of words and phrases.  It is not written in effortless language, but in words so diverse and complex readers are advised to have a dictionary and thesaurus readily handy. The author has a magnificent grasp of the English language.  His words at times are poetic, metaphorical, thought-provoking and enigmatic.  However, I found myself consulting the dictionary too much to really garner the real story in this novella.  As beautiful as the prose is, the plot seems lost.  At times it reads like the author is on a mission to write while not being attentive to the story, where there is no concrete understanding of what is being said or even if a particular portion is even necessary for the flow of the novella.  Torrance Stephens wants you to think while reading Gash's account of his life, and that is what I had to do.

Reviewed by Cashana Seals
of The RAWSISTAZ™ Reviewers

Cashana Seals currently resides in Montgomery, Alabama. An avid reader since she was very young, she spends her spare time reading and is the President and Founder of a local book club.


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