This is a brilliantly written little wonder of a book.
Some of this was published as flash fiction pieces previously but the story as a whole works as a novel through a finely woven narrative told in slightly differing styles.
Every chapter of this feels like it could be a short story itself. This should be seen as a strength providing that the sum remains equal to its parts. In the case of ‘Bottled Goods’ this is very much the case.
On the face of it, a story centering around a couple escaping from the East to the West seems like one that is on the verge of being overdone now. However, this can still be done well and maintain interest if the writer is skilled and can offer a new take on things, ‘Exit West’ did this brilliantly with its use of unusual magical mysticism with doors to other worlds while ‘Bottled Goods’ similarly brings its own fresh twist on it with the magic of old folk tale based magic and mysticism.
This is a uniquely fast paced, quick read that somehow maintains the style and poetry of short fiction across a novella length piece.