Gordon j.h. Leeanders’ To Be Continued
ECW Press, 2005

Read: Sitting at freshly-assembled dining-room table. Now we can seat 8 for a meal. Or one reader and one story collection. (It was a two-course read for me.)

Warning: Even if you usually spread short story collections over time, you’ll be tempted to rush this collection to keep the interconnections between characters in place as you read along. I did.

Loved: The device, intertwining the end of each story with the beginning of the next, the narrative focus shifting each time, sometimes circling back later in the collection from a slightly different angle. (This has long been one of my favourite things ever; if you love this idea, you’ll enjoy the collection.)

Would have loved more if…the dialogue hadn’t felt quite so correct. The stories are contemporary and vividly sketched. But we don’t always use complete sentences. Not when talking anyway. Especially not to people we know well. Sometimes not ever.

Serving suggestions: Trail mix (Why? Several of the characters are green-minded. And there’s hiking and biking. No raisins in my portion, please, unless they’re Thompson’s and organically grown: I’m crunchy too.And picky.)

Fave quote: About re-reading. “There are times when my life feels as though it’s about to come flying apart and all I want to do is attach myself to something stable and known and so I’ll read it just to have something familiar to hold onto, you know?”

A snapshot response. Have you been reading short stories?