Nearly 30 by Joe Woodhouse is an eclectic chapbook which explores the digital generation and the mundane aspects of life.
I like the comic side of this collection - poems such as The Hipster's Sonnet and Poems Like This have a certain charm. I always find I enjoy poetry which makes observations on society in ways which I relate to.
I didn't always find the collection that cohesive, but that may have been the point - the chapbook is almost a comedic take on a early mid life crisis (and the poet hopes his Facebook time line highlights will continue to show him in exciting places doing exciting things, rather than resigning himself to being 'Nearly 30').
The second poem, The Hamster Gangsters of Hackney, was the strongest for me. It explains how a little girl had her beloved hamster stolen which pulled at my heart strings! I think some of the prose (like mini short stories with full speech in some) felt slightly odd to me and the haikus needed stronger vocabulary to have a full charge and energy behind them.
However, the somehow lighthearted impending doom of Joe becoming 30 and 'settling' into his age, is very readable!
The book is available via www.wordcatcher.com
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