Jay Honeycomb's Post-Bliss is a wonderfully clever piece of postmodernist fiction. As the reader follows the experience of Ehf, a Hollywood movie star, they are prompted to consider and then re-consider how the real, surreal and the subconscious fluctuate between tangibility and something wholly imagined.
Written in entirely gender neutral terms, Honeycomb's work is a glimpse into fiction unreliant on pronouns for characterisation. The characterisation lies exactly where it should — in the dialogue, the actions and the choices of the characters. It is a beautiful treatment of humanity in this way, as gender is removed, and utterly refreshing. Honeycomb's choice to do this also enhances our understanding of Ehf and the wild experiences the undergo.
Epistolary in part, Post-Bliss moves seamlessly between prose, script excerpts and reviews of work Ehf has starred in. This structural choice creates and develops a world around Ehf and around the reader. Honeycomb's ability to control their reader's experience is sublime and this will not be appreciated until the very end. And I am not here to spoil it.
All I can say is this — the resolution is achieved so intelligently I smiled, laughed and could not help but appreciate the sheer talent behind how Honeycomb constructed the entire novella. It is very, very clever and not obnoxiously so. I urge you to read it and to stick with it. Even when Ehf is 'treated' with acupressure that makes you physically cringe or when Ehf begins a clinical trial. Stay with Honeycomb even at the most surreal and you will rewarded.
Post-Bliss is sharp and superb fiction, a credit to Honeycomb's craft.
I now have an affiliate link for Reedsy Discovery, a platform on which authors upload their books for review. If you use my link to become a reviewer and post your first review, you will receive $25 and I will receive the same.