Alongside the most recent Mavis Gallant collection, I've been reading a variety of short stories, including a collection of African writers, Opening Spaces, edited by Yvonne Vera. The collection dates to 1999 and includes both well-known and emerging writers: The Girl Who Can - Ama Ata Aidoo (Ghana) Deciduous Gazettes
The dead fuel Jesmyn Ward's novels. She feels the weight of their stories; she shoulders them, shares them. In Sing, Unburied, Sing, their chorus of voices - even in the epigraphs but also in the novel - reverberates between and beyond the covers. Ward's are heart-shattering stories. But they
Bette Bao Lord's In the Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson (1984) opens when Bandit is living in China in her grandparents' home. She is ten years old (nine in Western birthdays) and she is about to learn that she will be going to live in the United States.
Exploring in the back country of Santa Barbara County California, Margaret Millar discovered a group of abandoned buildings on top of a ridge of the Santa Ynez mountains. The view was incredible: the Pacific Ocean, the Santa Ynez valley, Lake Cachuma, and the San Rafael mountains, along with a main
Readers familiar with Margaret Millar's suspense novels, will immediately recognize her style and language in Wives and Lovers. (Just yesterday I discussed Vanish in an Instant, another volume in the Syndicate reprint series.) "It was a shoebox of a room, with the ceiling pressed down on it like a lid, and