Recommended to me by two of our best booksellers (thank you, Wes; thank you, Emily), this is the first story collection I ever fell in love with. Lorrie's grief is heavy and familiar with a willingness to find relief and comfort in growing in and out of love and in the universality of death and loss. Allow her to bring solace to an achy heart and you'll want to swim in her wit and drown in her sorrows forever.
One of the stories in this collection, Madwomen, is about a single mother raising her part Hawaiian son in West O’ahu after his father leaves. She is a wonderful character, full of self doubt, wondering how she can raise a son all alone in an ever-changing world. She is unsure how she can teach her son anything, and yet, there is a love that shines through every gorgeously written sentence. It is truly a perfectly crafted story, as are the other ten in this beautiful collection that honors the real voices of Hawai’i.
At first blush, this collection of SF stories seem to run the gambit - from a time traveling gate that could easily fit into a tale from 1001 nights, to a warning of predictive AI future, to stories of parenting. All share the question though of how do we, as humans, grapple with both big and small questions in an ever changing universe.
This beautiful collection invigorates and recontextualizes familiar futurist tropes with a powerful Metis voice. The stories range from historical fabulism to speculative fiction, and each story is followed by a note of context to help non-Metis better understand the author's choices. A taut, elegant, lingering work.
This beautiful, semi-autobiographical collection of short stories delves into passion, alcoholism, work, family and death. Berlin's keen observations about her life and the world around her are sparingly told but are so evocative she makes the smallest moments emotionally huge. She writes of recklessness and addiction with honesty and without shame, allowing the reader to be with her characters in all their complexity. The 44 stories left me wanting more.
This is a stunning collection of stories, the first few being quite slow and lyrical with the last three standing out as simply bizarre but so, so good. It's a remarkable exploration of xenophobia, feminism, violence, and social hierarchies that will make you uncomfortable, emotional, and simply stunned--especially "Dead Men Don't Rape," "Invocation," and "Instructions for the Eye." I've never read anything quite like this with a gorgeous translation to match.
This was a stellar collection! The very first story pulls you right in and I couldn't stop reading more. Every story felt like it they could be full blown novels at some point.
There is also this frantic and furious energy in many of the stories which IMO is very hard to pull off in short stories. This writer achieved something great here.
One last note: Mavis and Estelle have my whole heart <3
Kirby offers up some dark, giddy feminism that really hit the spot for me during this time of BS. I had no idea what was happening when I started the first story, then I did, and I was like 'Yeeees!'. I live for Cassandra, watching the destruction of her temples with a smirk on her face, remembering that these men are barefaced cowards.
"...men who think her mad driving her to madness. She wishes she could move far away to an islan and own a bird."
These are amazingly bizarre, dream-like and surreal stories that surprise the reader not in their bizarre nature, but by slowly revealing themselves to be deeply grounded and beautifully heart-felt. Like the most potent of dreams, they are nonsensically unexplainable yet impossible to forget.
Chelsea Bieker can tell you exactly who a character is without ever putting it on the page. She expertly allows the reader to learn through first person perspective. The way her characters move through the world will show you who they are without needless exposition. The theme of this collection is "seeking or sabotaging love" but this author will undoubtedly steal your heart with her profound understanding of human behavior.