Book Report: Tucked Away in a Discarded Scrapbook by S.V. Farnsworth (2022)

Book coverI got this book at S.V. Farnsworth’s book signing at ABC Books in April. As I predicted, I picked this book up first as it’s a collection of short pieces and poems.

The subtitle is “Creative Nonfiction with Poetry”, but the creative nonfiction pieces do not rise to the level of full essays. Instead, they’re more like diary entries and/or writing exercises, some poetic musings on incidents or elements of her life, but not necessarily things abstracted enough to draw the reader in so that the reader says, “Oh, yeah, me, too.”

For example, we get glimpses and allusions to abusive men her mother dated, and we get glimpses of the author’s younger years, whether getting ready to go to engineering school or serving as a missionary in Korea or ending up at Missouri Southern State University in Joplin, where the author lives now. But it’s not a autobiographical enough to tell those stories completely, and some of the gaps and questions a reader has–what happened to the engineering track? What was it like in South Korea? are not covered.

The poems, too, were a bit underwhelming, with a nice bit here or there, but nothing that really grabbed me or made me want to read it aloud and feel it in my mouth.

I’m still hopeful that the fiction, of which I have a bunch, will read a little better. Certainly, the prose is not bad, but it really doesn’t get a running start to anywhere. Hopefully, the longer form work will be better.

Sorry, S.V.; however, I totally invite you to pick any of my work and savage it in any medium you favor.

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