Black Lawrence Press

The Aversive Clause

The Aversive Clause

The Aversive Clause is rough. The characters are grasping, helpless; all their romances are doomed and their worlds inevitably will come crashing to an end. The stories are not gentle or sweet, but neither are they overly gritty. They are simply rough…uncomfortable.

And still most, if not all, of the pieces are hilarious in their own right, if viewed from the proper angle. One can either look at a failing world and despair or chuckle. The Aversive Clause wants you to do both at the same time.

Edwards’ prose is artful but by no means flawless, and those parts that are garish are pointedly laid bare like an assortment of picked over candies, the last in the box of dime-store chocolates. Some of them may very well be palatable, while others will cause wonder at why they were written—or even conceived of—in the first place.

This collection is for those who would chose the cherry cordial over the caramel, the off-brand coconut over the chocolate-coated toffee. It is wholly sweet, but also rather disquieting.


  • "(The) Aversive Clause is hilarious, absurd, frank, somehow honest, somewhat blasphemous, and wildly original. I've never read stories like these, but I've always wanted stories like these. B.C. Edwards is both a wordsmith and a riot; they exact kind of riot we need."
    —Justin Torres
  • "(Edwards) is a writer possessed of a quicksilver anarchic imagination and I recommend his fiction highly to all and sundry."
    —Patrick McGrath
  • "B. C. Edwards's debut collection is a menagerie of possible and impossible worlds united by desire and the search for the answer to that most basic of questions: who am I? It was Chekhov who said that “The role of the artist is to ask questions, not answer them,” and even as The Aversive Clause reminds us that there's more than one way to ask the same question, it shows us that sometimes the question is the answer, for as long as the asking lasts.
    —Dale Peck
  • "Edwards is somehow both irreverent and heartfelt, funny and sweetly earnest. The stories in The Aversive Clause are the work of a gifted and playful storyteller.
    —Seth Fried

B.C. Edwards

 B.C. Edwards is a producer at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater and attended the graduate writing program at The New School in New York. The winner of the 2011 Hudson Prize for Fiction, he is the author of the collected stories The Aversive Clause (Black Lawrence Press, 2013) as well as a chapbook To Mend Small Children, (Augury Books, 2012) and full length collection of poetry From the Standard Cyclopedia of Recipes (Black Lawrence Press, 2014). His work has appeared in Bomb, The Brooklyn Rail, Mathematics Magazine, Hobart and others.  He was raised in Newburyport, Massachusetts and lives in Brooklyn.

Edwards Author page

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