Passes Through (Paperback)

By Rob Stephenson, Lance Olsen, Ph.D. (Introduction by)

Fiction Collective 2, 9781573661553, 208pp.

Publication Date: March 17, 2010

List Price: 17.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


A fictional meditation on time and experience—part journal, part meditation, part dreamscape
In language that is frank and uncompromising, Rob Stephenson’s debut novel, Passes Through, moves forward in a rare and daring manner. Part journal, part meditation on aesthetics, part dreamscape, Passes Through investigates experience, identity, beauty, and sexuality, while provocatively complicating such distinctions as writing versus revision and imagination versus observation. It is a narrative of and about language, a narrative of and about narrative. 
Can we truly experience the present, the novel asks? No, we cannot, Passes Through suggests again and again. Stephenson throws to the wayside all of the traditional elements of fiction and in doing so composes a sort of musical composition of obsessive consciousness and selfhood’s slippage. This haunting novel never takes the easy route and baffles and confounds on its way toward a stunning yet inevitable finale.

About the Author

Rob Stephenson is a writer and composer living in Queens, New York.

Praise For Passes Through

"Welcome to the barbwire collection (the limbo between prose and poetry). Stephenson's Passes Through is the most exciting book I've read in some time. I don't know exactly why, but that only makes it more so. It has something to do with his pitch-perfect mastery of the underlying logic of association and his observational eye that sweeps through sex, art, death, and obsession—an obsession that may be love or that may be the desire to kill, or both. Here's a book that succeeds through pure writing to do what only the best fiction does." —Samuel R. Delany, author of Dark Reflections and Through the Valley of the Nest of Spiders

“In this narrative of pure negativity, to ‘pass through’ is to encounter the compulsive hater that may lurk in all of us. Stephenson is compellingly stalked via an accumulation of tiny precise phrases or gestures bespeaking the odd use of heartlessness, the protagonist’s and the culture’s, brilliantly juxtaposed in a stylistically and narratively intriguing work.” —Gail Scott, author of My Paris


"Passes Through is a very stream-of-conscious­ness affair, jumping, sometimes leaping, between thoughts and observations that mirror the way many of us think. It is James Joyce for the twenty-first cen­tury." --American Book Review