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Best known as something of a mid-wife to the Riot Grrrl movement, many might not know that Vancouver’s Jean Smith (Lester’s band mate in Mecca Normal) is also an accomplished author and zinester. Good to know! Literal to the points of tears, Smith’s Two Stories is just that–two tales that in a weird, roundabout way mirror the aggressive and artsy nature of Smith’s music but with a whole lot more humour and a heaping helpin’ of street smarts. Firstly, the fabulously-titled “Carton of Creamo and Red Jell-o Setting” tells the story of helping and humping in the computer age, with seriously sexy results. Secondly, “In the End He Says ‘Attraction is Ephemeral” speaks of mini-skirts, kitchenwares and other musts for the modern man. Aesthetically speaking, both works share a headspace and drip with a weirdo relationship humour that’s miles away from the tripe you’d see on network television. Smith does well by keeping these stories short and razor sharp, prodding at the reader with a seasonal blend of black humour and heart. Amusement is paramount and Two Stories definitely will strike a nerve with hipsters and other indie art fans looking to bust a gut. (Cameron Gordon)

Chapbook, Jean Smith, #1, 24 pages, $8, c/o Smarten Up! & Get To The Point, 304-1320 Salsbury Dr, Vancouver, BC, V5L 4B3,

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