BLACK LIGHT REVIEWS

  • NPR, Darkness And Beauty Go Hand In Hand In Black Light. “Parsons writes with the unpredictable power of a firecracker, bringing flashes of illumination to people who struggle with disappointment, both in themselves and others. Every story in this collection is beyond remarkable, and Parsons proves herself to be a gutsy country-punk poet with a keen eye and a stubbornly unique sensibility.”

  • Los Angeles Times, In Black Light: Stories, Kimberly King Parsons Serves Up a Big and Wild Texas. “Occasionally a debut collection lands with such a wet, happy thud that you immediately start imagining the rest of the writer’s long career…This is a book for the lonely, for the losers poised for more — it’s a celebration of and a deeply felt meditation on the injustice, cruelty and a million private horrors endured by the weak and the unloved. It’s not just that Parsons’ people are doomed. Even as they squirm and melt and seize, you love them, and root for them.”

  • Publishers Weekly (starred review). “[Black Light] crackles with the frenetic energy of the women who stalk its pages…Parsons’s characters are sharp and uncannily observed, bound up in elastic and electrifying prose. This is a first-rate debut.”

  • The Paris Review. “There is a reckless kind of heat to the tender, broken characters in these stories. . . . Parsons is both unflinching and eloquent in her portrayals of people as they burn and rage.”

  • O, the Oprah Magazine. “In lithe, lyrical prose à la Amy Hempel and Noy Holland, Parsons's short fiction parses the addictions and desires of Texan girls and women, and will break your heart even as it makes you laugh.”

  • Texas Observer, Black Light is a Weird, Wonderful fever Dream of a Book. “A collection that recalls the work of Katherine Dunn, Alice Munro, and Denis Johnson. But Parsons also charts her own territory with stories that offer the promise of transcendence and desire while simultaneously threatening the pain of regret and loss.”

  • Electric Lit, Aimee Bender Recommends “Guts.” “This story smartly resists epiphany, and sometimes the waiting takes time, and sometimes the waiting is the thing itself, full of its own curious and complicated light.”

  • Bustle. "Black Light is an unshakable debut, a collection of stories that will grip you under its spell until its closing notes. Compulsively readable, this book is as much a love letter to language as it is to the natural world, the darkened corners of desire, and the absurdities of girlhood. Gutsy, loud, and so very Texas, this one moved me in a tectonic way. You’ll underline every sentence."

  • The Millions. “A story collection rooted in the vastness and contradictions of Texas and composed by an author who refuses to shy away from the strange, ugly, and interesting, Black Light has been described as Friday Night Lights meets Ottessa Moshfegh. What more could a reader want, really?”

  • Vol.1 Brooklyn. “Parsons has established herself as a prime chronicler of the bleaker side of human existence. In these moody, stylish stories, Parsons ventures into fraught relationships, ecstatic experiences, and the weight of past trauma. The result is a searing first book.”

  • Booklist. “An assured debut. Imbued with the expanses of their landscapes, Parson’s dozen tales portray characters navigating unavoidable shifts in the realities of their lives.”

  • Alma. “Black Light is full of stories that jump off the page thanks to Parsons’ intoxicating language and keen ability for rendering perfectly imperfect characters.”

  • Paperback Paris. “Parsons peers into the darkness that lies beneath the human condition in a set of mercilessly human stories ranging from the burn of first love to the bane of obsession.”

  • Debutiful. “This collection put a spell on me. They are the type of stories that feel like I have lived in them while also being such a unique, sometimes unsettling experience. Expect perspectives you’ve never considered before as you dive into this book.”

  • PDX Monthly. “Black Light transports readers, in electric prose, to [Parsons’s] home state of Texas.”

  • Ploughshares. “Parsons makes good use of the games played by siblings, exploring what they reveal about the hidden fears and desires of the young.”