"Consumer-isms in 12 Easy Steps is a collection of short stories from Hamilton writer Alexandra Kitty. The book is centered on the idea of financial and superficial gains above all else. The satiric collection has a long list of very unlikable characters. Vile individuals like Divina Surrealist, an exhibition artist who self describes herself as the love child of Salvador Dali and a schizophrenic Italian nun in the story "Wain in Vain." She, by far, is the most annoying character in all the steps of the book. In one lecture to her fans she describes her "disadvantaged" upbringing: "[My parents] were pedestrian and plebian and entirely possessed with lattes and impressing their pathetic friends with driving an expensive car. It was a horrifying and taxing childhood." The only thing she could do was retreat into her art; which we find out, is a confrontational and intimate exhibit showcasing heroin addicts scooped off of the street. Other stories in Consumer-isms include a serial mail order bride killer, washed-up TV kids recollecting the misery of their early fame, the unhappiness of being the 103-year-old boy in Bingford and a couple other stories based in the cutthroat corporate world. Kitty presents evidence such as email correspondence, press releases and phone call transcripts instead of a straight up narrative. It's a welcoming challenge to piece together what exactly happened to the fall of the super power company led by a powerhouse couple. Consumer-isms offers the reader therapy of a different kind: living vicariously through the evils of consumption. Who said retail therapy was healthy anyway?" (Andrea Nene, Broken Pencil)
Alexandra gives an overview of the book:
I am a Canadian-based author and journalist who has written books and articles for Presstime, Current, Quill, Editor & Publisher, Critical Review, Skeptic, Elle Canada, Maisonneuve, Broken Pencil, The Victoria Times-Colonist, and The Hamilton Spectator. I was the...