By John Keene
New Directions Publishing Corporation, Paperback, 9780811225526, 320pp.
Publication Date: May 17, 2016
Ranging from the 17th century to our current moment, and crossing multiple continents, Counternarratives' stories and novellas draw upon memoirs, newspaper accounts, detective stories, interrogation transcripts, and speculative fiction to create new and strange perspectives on our past and present. An Outtake chronicles an escaped slave's take on liberty and the American Revolution;"The Strange History of Our Lady of the Sorrows" presents a bizarre series of events that unfold in a nineteenth-century Kentucky convent; "The Aeronauts" soars between bustling Philadelphia, still-rustic Washington, and the theater of the U.S. Civil War; Rivers, presents a free Jim meeting up decades later with his former raftmate Huckleberry Finn; and in "Acrobatique," the subject of a famous Edgar Degas painting talks back.