Open a book this minute and start reading. Don’t move until you’ve reached page fifty. Until you’ve buried your thoughts in print. Cover yourself with words. Wash yourself away. Dissolve. Carol Shields Republic of Love

“Fiction” Alice Munro

Is it something like a triangle? With happiness, unhappiness and love arranged with an equal distance between each point?

Perhaps. Certainly there are triangles in “Fiction”, shifting alliances and fractures.

Love triangles. Happiness triangles.

Just enough. Too much.

The kind of happiness discussed in “Fiction” is different from that which Doree/Fleur muses upon in “Dimensions”.

[…]

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Mark Anthony Jarman’s Knife Party at the Hotel Europa (2015)

A book-length demonstration of propulsive prose.

This is the word that I wrote in capital letters, in the margins of my reading diary about Mark Anthony Jarman’s Knife Party at the Hotel Europa (2015), but then I wondered if I had subconsciously (deliberately, even!) lifted it from the cover.

It sounds like a word one might see […]

June 2015, In My Stacks

My progress through Gabrielle Roy‘s works has been slow but steady, and this month I requested one of the children’s books, which I held out for myself as a reward for finishing six of her novels.

My treat was to be Cliptail, but the only copy available in the public library was the French edition, […]

Neil Smith’s Boo (2015)

There are “ways of making people into ghosts”. So Atticus say, to Jem in To Kill a Mockingbird, about Boo (Arthur) Radley.

Alfred A. Knopf, 2015

Neil Smith turned Oliver Dalrymple into a ghost in Boo. And, then, he named him Boo and gave him a Casper the Friendly Ghost wrist watch.

Whether or not Arthur […]

“Dimensions” Alice Munro

Things that you can slip between.

They are often ‘new’ in nature.

Perspectives transform.

If I was playing $30,000 Pyramid, I might think such things, in response to the idea of ‘dimensions’.

At the heart of Alice Munro’s “Dimensions”: a woman who is fundamentally altered, facing a ‘new’ future, slipping between layers of meaning,  transforming.

[…]

TGIF: In the workplace, on the page (4 of 4)

A new Friday fugue, concluding this week, considering the ways in which our working lives appear on the pages of novels and short stories. (Previous weeks can be viewed here, here and here, if you’re keen.)

Riverhead, 2013

Mohsin Hamid’s How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia (2013) “Her […]

TGIF: In the workplace, on the page (3 of 4)

A new Friday fugue, running through this month, considering the ways in which our working lives appear on the pages of novels and short stories. The first two weeks appear here and here.)

Tightrope Books, 2011

Kathryn Mockler’s Onion Man (2011) “The first night, time went by fast because it […]

In My Reading Log

At the beginning of March, I was determined to keep my nose in a stack of backlisted books. Books like these are the kind that to keep my focus on my own shelves in this reading year.

Chad Pelley’s Every Little Thing (2013) “Every day, every hour, really, it was a new name and a new […]

“Messenger” Alice Munro

When I began rereading The View from Castle Rock, I stumbled. It had not been a favourite and my return was not an easy one.

I wondered if this had something to do with my personal response to the idea of expecting words to hold losses. I had lost a friend recently and I was […]

“What Do You Want to Know For?” Alice Munro

And, “Who Do You Think You Are?”

McClelland & Stewart, 2006

As readers approach the final tale in this collection, it seems appropriate to have it titled with a question.

Whatever might be resolved in the effort of creating a narrative in which to secure one’s ancestors, one could not help but have as many […]