Dodging the Bull

Wakefield Press published my short fiction collection, Dodging the Bull, in 2007. Stories in the collection were nominated for the Dinny O’Hearn Prize and the book was part of the 2008 The Age State Library Summer Read. You can read samples from the book here. And here’s what some reviewers said:

“Paul Mitchell is working in the territory inhabited by artists as diverse as Tim Winton, Raymond Carver and Bruce Springsteen . . . As with them, Mitchell is interested in the powerless, the inarticulate and the struggling – people who don’t really understand how their lives could have turned out this way and don’t quite know how to talk about it.”
The Australian

“Difference is the defining characteristic of these stories. The characters experience their difference from others; the reader experiences their difference from the characters . . . What the stories have in common is that their undercurrents swirl strongly and they deliberately resist closure.”
The Age

“Mitchell’s style is astonishingly authoritative, and he shows flashes of genius as he tries to articulate the almost inexpressible on behalf of characters whose voices . . . we don’t often hear. Like Charles Bukowski and, more recently, Geoff Goodfellow, there is deep emotion here – pent up and urgent.”
Overland

” . . . ideas or concepts [are] more challenging than a first reading may support . . . These stories make the reader question identities and subject positions . . . The reader is initially drawn into what seems a comforting and conventional story, and then, casually, an image or piece of information is introduced which subverts that sense of security.”
Antipodes: North American Journal of Australian and New Zealand Literature

“Some of the stories  . . . make for extremely uncomfortable reading. But this is obviously what Mitchell intended. He has an unflinching eye and a sparse writing style that refuses to spare the reader’s sensibilities.”
The Independent Weekly


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