Reviews

Asthmatica

Rose Burkoff

The short stories in Jon Paul Fiorentino’s Asthmatica (Insomniac) tickle the funny bone every time, from hypothetical essay titles to a story about the tactics a kid might use to shame the son of a mediocre Swedish hockey player. In these yarns Fiorentino travels between social commentary and joyous descriptions of bad behaviour. Most of his stories concern young Jonny, a fat, epileptic, diabetic, pathetic loser who nevertheless finds ways to fit in and to negotiate the gross details of adolescent boyhood. These include instances of vacuum-cleaner love, embarrassing dates and pre-coital freakouts.

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