January 2018, In My Bookbag

2018-01-25T17:17:13+00:00

In which there is talk of the slim stories which have travelled with me within the city, while bulkier volumes stayed home. Charles Dickens' Bleak House and John Ajvide Lindqvist's Harbor (Translated by Marlaine Delargy) are awkward travelling companions. As are some of the skinnies in my current stack,

January 2018, In My Bookbag 2018-01-25T17:17:13+00:00

Mavis Gallant’s “Paola and Renata” (1965)

2017-11-21T15:27:35+00:00

The widow has let her hair go. It is half mahogany and half dull grey. Not only grey, but dull grey. Paola and Renata's listening that summer One has the sense that being a widow might have brought this about. The simple act of inhabiting widowhood. But that

Mavis Gallant’s “Paola and Renata” (1965) 2017-11-21T15:27:35+00:00

Catherine Hernandez’s Scarborough (2017)

2017-10-24T10:54:35+00:00

To begin with, young Laura is rushed into packing her things into plastic bags. Just a few pages later, Sylvie is thrust into "double-time walking" with her mom. Either of these girls could be the "in-motion" girl on the cover of Catherine Hernandez's Scarborough. But they are only two

Catherine Hernandez’s Scarborough (2017) 2017-10-24T10:54:35+00:00

Maybe and What’s Always Been Done: On Andrea MacPherson’s What We Once Believed (2017)

2017-10-12T14:27:56+00:00

I’ve loved the idea of a character named Maybe since I read Katheen Martin’s novel, Penny Maybe, about a sixteen-year-old girl working out all the possibilities ahead of her. Isn’t it just perfect for a coming-of-age story? And, indeed, in Andrea MacPherson’s novel, Maybe Collins is eleven years old

Maybe and What’s Always Been Done: On Andrea MacPherson’s What We Once Believed (2017) 2017-10-12T14:27:56+00:00

Such a Lovely Little War: A Memoir

2017-09-14T13:06:34+00:00

A child's experience of war is strangely pure and slanted. The impact is wholly dramatic at times. Its inconsequence just as overwhelming at other times. Sharing his experiences growing up in a French-Vietnamese family in Saigon, between 1961 and 1963, Marcelino Truong's graphic memoir is vibrant and informative. Some

Such a Lovely Little War: A Memoir 2017-09-14T13:06:34+00:00