‘… it is rare to contemplate a first collection that is so assuredly and comprehensively a success.’ (Kevin Bailey, HQ Poetry Magazine, nos. 47&48)
My full collection, Noir, is available from HappenStance. See more, and order a copy, over in the HappenStance shop or from Amazon.
DA Prince wrote in her review for Antiphon: ‘Tension between language’s clarity and situational ambiguity drives not only this poem but the whole collection.’ ‘It’s not about solving puzzles, or getting the right answer but about how vulnerable, shaky, unlikely, unhappy, immediate and menacing are the lives of ordinary people on the everyday street; people like us. It also shows how our apparently simple day-to-day language can be shaped into layered and powerful narrative when a poet as good as Charlotte Gann is driving it forward. Noir suits our times.’
Kevin Bailey in HQ Poetry wrote: ‘Sometimes a poet of great ability just ‘pops up’. It’s a rare thing, but you recognize it simply because the language flows as naturally as conversation and the images are stirred up as mind’s eye visions that are at one new, but also familiar because they touch deeper, more common memories. It’s the secret of all good poetry – to make the personal universal.’
Matthew Stewart on Rogue Strands described Noir as ‘a textured, multi-layered, slanted journey through the depths of human relationships, never savouring the dark but fearing its connotations and consequences, seeking out a chink of light.’
Lisa Kelly in Magma 67 said: ‘Several scenarios co-exist. And if the mind is more ‘process’ and less ‘noun’, then its dynamic potential does indeed allow for multiple workings and re-workings…’
David Clarke, in Under the Radar (issue nineteen), described the book as: ‘a very original approach to the politics of gender, relationships and family that has an implicitly political intent.’
Josephine Corcoran in The North, 58, said: ‘Like a good thriller writer, Gann is skilled at suggesting, rather than showing… these poems reveal uncomfortable truths about modern life and human nature.’
John Field on Poor Rude Lines wrote: ‘Gann’s not interested in reassuring her reader with the distance of a Transylvanian or Los Angeles mise-en-scène. We’re made instead to wander the half-deserted streets of our own towns.’
And Peter Kenny wrote: ‘Noir provokes all kinds of questions… In the angst, the curious interplay of observed and observing, and the sense of near-palpable danger, there is a dark magnificence to these poems.’
See excerpts from a Poetry Spotlight interview where I talk about the collection here.
And further online reviews:
- by John Challis for The Poetry School ‘…a tightly woven collection of half-told narratives’
- and Pam Thompson on London Grip ‘…poems swim up like dark individual dramas’