Tice Cin Recommends Books for People Who Feel Glitched

To celebrate the publication of Keeping the House, we have this fantastic list from author Tice Cin.


What we experience shimmers and flits around us. Unfastened. Recently I’ve been reading books as a means to hold my thoughts together. Here are some of them. 

Night Philosophy by Fanny Howe (Divided Publishing).

I pretend I trust surface truths, that I am moving forward, street by street, and everything I pass, is passed . . . The street that I can’t see exists now in a state that will receive me as I enter it and everyone else will enter the next moment at the same moment I do.

Recommended to me by a bookseller from another bookshop, inside the radical bookshop Burning House Books in Glasgow. We had just met, and I was struck by the ease with which he sat in the sun, at a chair by the shop window. I asked him for a book that felt like night in pauses and he recommended Night Philosophy. I’m thinking about the way we drift through spaces as though they are always fixed. Do these buildings expect us?


Trick Mirror by Jia Tolentino (4th Estate)

To communicate an identity requires some degree of self delusion. A performer, in order to be convincing, must conceal the discreditable facts that he has had to learn about the performance –

Technology has fractured our outlooks on the world. I think a lot about what it means to be on the Internet and how sometimes it feels tempting to trade a lot of yourself away in order to garner mainstream interest as a public figure. Jia writes about this in a relatable way in her book of essays.


Abandon by Sangeeta Bandyopadhyay. Translated by Arunava Sinha. (Tilted Axis)

A mangy dog sat near Roo’s feet, half its ear torn off. It was gasping for breath. The dog would die any minute. Roo was observing it carefully. Ishwari was carrying a bottle of glucose water for Roo – when he collapsed he had to be given concentrated glucose water. Grabbing the bottle from her, Roo poured a little out on the floor. Gasping, the dog lapped it up.

 I remember when I first read this. Ishwari is a character written with split perspective. The way this is managed is so elegant. The story too. This moment in the book where we see Roo’s innate kindness draws me, it makes me think about how we necessitate acts of kindness.


Death by Sex Machine by Franny Choi (Sibling Rivalry)

‘I once made my mouth a technology of softness. I listened carefully as I drank.’

Franny Choi is one of my favourite poets. This chapbook, described as ‘cyborg rosetta’ captivates me because of the way that it suggests the ways that we adapt, but also how we are adapted by outside forces. I think of the parameters around the choices that are available to us. 


This Tilting World by Colette Fellous translated by Sophie Lewis (Les Fugitives).

How to work so that everything both connects and comes apart and we see it all anew. How to dig beneath first impressions, to discover a second language, to create hidden connections, associations, reminders, echoes, harmonies.

 I’ve been thinking a lot lately about that frisson of echoes and breaks. We connect and come apart, all at once, wondering at which point our hands reached each other. At what point did our hands pull away?

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