"I’ve always written short stories, I’ve always been interested in the form being dictated by the concept, rather than the other way round." Jon McGregor
Posts tagged "Canada"
A breath of sadness

A breath of sadness

“Like a breath of sadness” is how Edvard Munch felt at the time he painted The Scream. “I stood there shivering from dread – and I felt this big, infinite scream through nature,” he wrote in his diary for 1890­–92. A reader of Larry Tremblay’s The Orange Grove will inevitably feel the same – will...
The shovelist

The shovelist

Guillaume Morin stood at his kitchen window, peering through the falling snow. Across the street, two men in matching brown leather jackets were unloading boxes from a metallic blue Cadillac and lugging them into Suzanne Sillery’s old place. “Stop staring! It’s not proper.” Guillaume looked at his wife. She was seated at the kitchen table,...
Elena Lappin: Secrets and lives

Elena Lappin: Secrets and lives

In Elena Lappin’s novel The Nose, her protagonist Natasha Kaplan, a young New Yorker in London editing an Anglo-Jewish magazine, discovers more than she’s bargained for when in the course of her new job she ends up uncovering secrets about her own family’s past. “I thought I had invented and imagined it all,” writes Lappin...
Freedom suite

Freedom suite

February 1st marks National Freedom Day in the United States. Initiated in the 1940s, the holiday commemorates Abraham Lincoln’s signing of the Thirteenth Amendment in 1865, which banned slavery. Its intent is to “promote good feelings, harmony, and equal opportunity among all citizens and to remember that the United States is a nation dedicated to...
A wager

A wager

One evening in Toronto, the gods Apollo and Hermes were at the Wheat Sheaf Tavern. Apollo had allowed his beard to grow until it reached his clavicle. Hermes, more fastidious, was clean-shaven, but his clothes were distinctly terrestrial: black jeans, a black leather jacket, a blue shirt. They had been drinking, but it wasn’t the...
Dennison's dolce vita

Dennison’s dolce vita

July 9, 2015 “So, where were we?” I say, as she fills her water bottle and I rescue a fragile, yellow spider from the yoghurt container, in which I have packed the blueberries from my bushes. “What were we talking about?” Ruth Ozeki and I haven’t seen each other in over nine months. Time enough...
Living with authoritis

Living with authoritis

I’m a bit of a recluse. It comes with the job of writing books. I live with my husband and our two middle-school children in a canyon in the Santa Monica Mountains in southern California. Between school drop-off and pick-up I’m a novelist. I sit alone in my pajamas with crazy hair and a mug...
The Pandora paradox

The Pandora paradox

Throughout our convoluted histories, stories have had a way of reappearing under different forms and guises; we can never be certain of when a story was told for the first time, only that it will be not the last. Before the first chronicle of travel there must have been an Odyssey of which we now...
Why read a book (let alone write one)?

Why read a book (let alone write one)?

It’s not new to ponder the demise of reading and the printed page, to note that reading has become exotic – that the printed page is going the way of woodblock prints. It’s certainly not new to bemoan the demise of literary writing and the state of publishing, the relegation of challenging long-form fiction and...
Derealization

Derealization

David Bezmozgis’ latest novel The Betrayers is a powerful study of the nature of principles and loyalty, relating the events of a single momentous day in the life of a disgraced Israeli politician and former Soviet dissident who refuses to back down from a contrary stand over the West Bank. We peek inside his writer’s room… Where...