In tribute to the surrealist narrative techniques of André Breton and Robert Desnos, Minor Episodes documents the serial adventures of Minor, the ubiquitous “everymogul” who embodies the economic 1% and keeps musically erotic quixotics on tap. Having entered a “rent in time” that gives each chapter an alternate reality, Minor swaggers through an undersea casino, in-flight blockbuster, bawdy Western, and Kafkaesque job hunt, cavorting with billboard queen Bébé Lala and country-music legend Faith Faith, when not dressing down his shifty sidekick, The Concierge, or haunting the intensely disinterested songstress Miss Sharp. However, danger looms in the form of The Stropper, a serial killer fresh out of a shaving promotion, and an enigmatic ginger-beer icon who has retired from a satisfying life of culinary assassinations.
Major Ruckus, contrapuntal text and parody of the speculative fiction genre, celebrates the stylistic techniques of William S. Burroughs and Robert Anton Wilson, following a frenzied struggle by various parties to obtain an essential time-travel component, a struggle that includes psychic “dicks,” universal call-centre operators, aboriginal eroticists, lubricant heiresses, rogue advertisement animations, pornography censors, and alien sperm-bank clones, all to the horrified fascination of hapless meta-writer Oober Mann. But ultimately, it is Carl Sagan who creates the most confusion, when his prudish doodle of a woman is sent into space via the Voyager probe, triggering a plan to “assist” the earth’s declining population through extraterrestrials in the guise of census takers.
Minor Episodes and Major Ruckus introduce The Chaos! Quincunx series.
Garry Thomas Morse has had two books of poetry published by LINEbooks – Transversals for Orpheus (2006) and Streams (2007) – and three collections of fiction published by Talonbooks – Death in Vancouver (2009), Minor Episodes / Major Ruckus (2012), and Rogue Cells / Carbon Harbour, the latter two of which make up two of three books in The Chaos! Quincunx series. Talon has also published two books of Morse’s poetry, After Jack (2010) and Discovery Passages (2011), which was a finalist for the Governor General’s Award for Poetry and the Dorothy Livesay Poetry Prize, and was also voted One of the Top Ten Poetry Collections of 2011 by the Globe and Mail and One of the Best Ten Aboriginal Books from the past decade by CBC’s 8th Fire. Minor Episodes / Major Ruckus was shortlisted for the 2013 ReLit Awards. Rogue Cells / Carbon Harbour was shortlisted for the 2014 ReLit Awards.
Grounded in the work of Arthur Rimbaud, Robert Desnos, Ezra Pound, Jack Spicer, Rainer Maria Rilke, and his Native oral traditions, Morse’s work continues to appear in a variety of publications and is studied at various Canadian universities, including the University of British Columbia. He is the recipient of the 2008 City of Vancouver Mayor’s Arts Award for Emerging Artist and has twice been selected as runner-up for the Robert Kroetsch Award for Innovative Poetry.
Morse is a casual commentator for Jacket2 and his work continues to appear in a variety of publications and is studied at various Canadian universities, including UBC. He currently resides in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
“Here are Bébé Cadum with his enormous smiling visage and Corsair Sanglot in their returning personages Bébé Lala and Signor Minor cavorting over the baroquely surrealist pages of these major Minor Episodes … our beloved Robert Desnos would have chortled in delight: so do we.”
– Mary Ann Caws, author of The Surrealist Look: An Erotics of Encounter
“Like a beguiling house of mirrors, Minor Episodes bends, twists, fractures and deforms reality through phantasmagoric visions, orgiastic inventions and a mischievous use of language. Don’t be deceived by its title: there is nothing minor about this major accomplishment.”
– Martine Desjardins, author of Maleficium
“Minor Episodes / Major Ruckus is a wonder. Garry Thomas Morse most certainly has Salvador Dalí, Miguel de Cervantes, André Breton, and that rude rocker Gargantua, courtesy of Rabelais, in his corner. His novel, with its themes of sex, money, and intrigue, and with its over-current of hilarity running amok, explodes from the page. To say this novel is on steroids is to downplay things. A careening, giddy ride is ahead, a mad word-dash to realities you’ve never even dreamed of. Transportation guaranteed!”
– M.A.C. Farrant, author, creator of My Turquoise Years
“The real reaction would be screaming catatonia, and too many authors would go too far into the alternative and just effuse us to death Pynchonian; but here the characters are true denizens of their milieu, something rarer in fiction than it might initially appear, and give us the reactions of, like, really arch action heroes. Oh! It’s camp! And Minor is an antivillain for our times who puts the Baudribbles and drabbles in DeLillo’s Cosmopolis to shame.”
– Martin McCarvill (LibraryThing)