A Stephen King blurb. And, it’s declared: a novel of terror. Nick Cutter’s readers know what they’re in for.
And, if there was any doubt, little clues speckle the first few chapters.
Readers are “waiting for unknown wickedness”.
There are shadows coalescing into permanence and logs groaning. There is a sheet of insects cloying and [...]
Perhaps, like many of us, Alice Munro has read and fully inhabited a story filled with wonders only to be cheated with the last-line revelation that the guts of that story were nothing but a dream.
In contrast, “My Mother’s Dream” subverts that expectation and begins with the dream, before shifting into reality.
But the [...]
Desmond has returned to the island because the prime minister has asked those who went abroad to help rebuild the nation, now that it has gained its independence.
Harper Collins Publishers, 2014
Cecil Foster’s experience is not unlike Desmond’s, but Independence is rooted in the story of a boy who has known only the [...]
The story begins with conflict, the televised debate between Kennedy and Nixon. But “Before the Change” considers other conflicts, closer to home, closer to the heart.
“What is that expression? It’s as if he’s got a list of offenses both remembered and anticipated and he’s letting it be known how his patience can [...]
The word ‘goodish’ entered my vocabulary thanks to an observation that Carol Shields makes of two female friends in The Republic of Love. (General increased usage of -ish also ensued.)
“They love the word ‘goodish,’ as in goodish sunsets, goodish travel bargains, goodish men.”
The title and cover of Suzanne Sutherland’s When We Were Good brought that to [...]
At twenty-eight years old, Priscila Uppal meets her mother in Brazil, twenty years after her mother has abandoned daughter-son-husband.
Two decades later, their relationship is a complicated one between near-strangers.
They spend twelve days together and the experience is shared in Projection within a framework of movie titles.
This organizing principle reveals the tangible and [...]
At first glance, readers might not spot similarities between J. C. Carleson’s The Tyrant’s Daughter (2014) and Gabrielle Prendergast’s Audacious (2013).
Knopf – Random House, 2014
Laila, the 15-year-old daughter of an assassinated dictator, flees to North America with the aid of authorities who recognize the family’s vulnerability with shifting political power in their [...]
In “Save the Reaper” and “The Children Stay” readers are directed to wonder what young children remember of their parents’ shenanigans, but in this story readers inhabit Karin’s perspective.
Karin is certainly old enough to actively observe and contemplate the events unfolding around her (although from a girl’s perspective, so although she is maturing, [...]
This year’s Massey Lecture text begins with passion and grandiose declarations.
“I have had a lifelong obsession with blood, and I’m not the only one. As both substance and symbol, blood reveals us, divides us, and unites us. We care about blood, because it spills literally and figuratively into every significant corner of [...]
As with the earlier stories in this collection, readers are cast back in time: by thirty years in “The Children Stay”.
Readers find themselves on the east coast of the Island, Vancouver Island, but the exact location of the cottage is reminiscent of the way in which the Maitland River flows into the Goderich harbour, [...]