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The Good News,

Rob A. Mackenzie

The Good News, Rob A. Mackenzie


Publication Date: 15-Apr-13 | ISBN: 9781907773426 | Trim Size: 198 x 129 mm | Extent: 96pp | Format: Hardback

UK & International Distribution: Grantham Book Services | Publishing Status: ActiveShop online at HiveFind your local bookshop




“Today you turn up
     five habits to quit for happiness:
criticism, control, complaint, excuses, expectations,
     without which you’d be happy, bland
and unbearable.”
(from ‘Thirteen’)

Is the attempt to secure happiness worth making? Or is it simply a fast track to inevitable disenchantment? Rob A. Mackenzie confronts such questions in The Good News, his second full collection, but it’s no self-help manual. Fate, faith, travel, love, politics and death are woven into taut, affecting poems, which reveal new layers with every reading: a professional sceptic tries in vain not to become too certain of his own doubt, angels weep in Spanish into their designer coffees, and a hundred Scottish poets are enlisted to articulate the trials and tribulations of their nation at a key point in its history. The book’s central section is a sequence concerning autism’s effect on family life. Poets have written about autism before, but no one has written anything quite like this.

Mackenzie offers a typically versatile collection in style and form, combining an inimitable sensibility and imagination with a secure command of tone. These poems confirm his growing reputation as one of our most intriguing and alluring voices.


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“Rob Mackenzie's The Good News truly is good news for readers of contemporary poetry. He has a wonderful ear, a wide knowledge of literature in several languages (beyond the Italian he translates from here) and a voracious appetite for the world's frustrations and rewards. He writes with great intelligence and music, can be politically astute then immediately playful; his work is inventive, humane and welcoming. This book will surely confirm his reputation as one of the best Scottish poets of his generation.” —Ian Duhig



Rob A. MackenzieRob A. Mackenzie was born in Glasgow and lives in Edinburgh. His previous work includes The Opposite of Cabbage (Salt 2009) and two pamphlets: Fleck and the Bank (Salt 2012), which dramatized a bank employee’s life during the financial crisis, and The Clown of Natural Sorrow, (HappenStance Press 2005). Carrie Etter, in the TLS, wrote that his first collection impressed “with its distinctive style and energetic exploration of the way we live now.” He is reviews editor for Magma Poetry magazine.

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The Opposite of Cabbage, Rob A. Mackenzie

The Opposite of Cabbage,

Rob A. Mackenzie

- £8.99
Throughout this collection, opposites collide – reality and delusion, political activism and apathy, friend and enemy, life and death. These poems cut away at convention and simmer with unsettling, dramatic images. Ironic and humorous, complex and engaging, you can’t do without The Opposite of Cabbage.
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Price: £12.99 (£12.99 Inc. VAT)

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