‘Candy Glass’ by May-Lan Tan

This is a story about doubles and the often unstable barriers between them. An actress has an affair with her stunt double, its highs and lows detailed via a collage of shooting script excerpts, which dissolve into prose and then clarify once again into script. May-Lan Tan is a master at messing with form and her strangely precise, deeply filmic and often uncomfortable phrasing falls neatly between the chairs of script and story. I love the way she allows the central conceit of doubles to mean everything and pretty much nothing simultaneously, playing up to the idea that we are all far less finitely separated from each other than we might like to think. Throughout ‘Candy Glass’, Tan presents desire as a dangerous, liminal zone, a bleeding place, too easily shattered.

Collected in Things To Make And Break, CB Editions, 2014. New edition from Sceptre, 2018

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