Wallflowers

Wallflowers

Stories

Book - 2014
Average Rating:
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"From windswept Pacific beaches to the inner reaches of the human heart, Wallflower is a shimmering and often surprising journey of discovery, with many unexpected turns along the way. Robertson has created a cast of unique and wholly engaging characters. Here there are swindlers and innocents, unlikely heroes and gritty survivors; they teach us how to trap humming birds, relinquish dreams gracefully, and feed raccoons without getting bitten. 'Wish you were here's' letters on a road trip parallel a woman's painful trip into her family's dysfunctional past; reminiscences of a beloved sibling are inextricably bound up with calamity ... and roommate problems lead to a surprising (and skin-crawling) revelation. Robertson smashes stereotypes even as she shows us remarkable new ways of experiencing the world, and of relating to our fellow human beings."--
Publisher: Toronto, Ontario, Canada :, Hamish Hamilton,, 2014
ISBN: 9780143191407
Branch Call Number: F ROB NVD
Characteristics: 295 pages ; 22 cm

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SPL_Robyn Mar 17, 2017

Blind Date 2017 comment: "I'm not a fan of short stories..."

s
stacy84
Oct 13, 2016

What a depressing book!! Almost all stories are about death.

ksoles Nov 05, 2014

Short fiction always take a back seat to the revered novel, an unfortunate fact but one that makes the search for a brilliant story so much more worthwhile. Certainly, such awe-inspiring tales grace bookstore shelves just waiting to be discovered and no collection proves this more than Eliza Robertson's debut, "Wallflowers."

While working on her MA, the Victoria writer earned a Man Booker Scholarship and the Curtis Brown Prize for best writer. She received the 2013 Commonwealth Short Story Prize for "We Walked on Water" and "L’Etranger" was a runner-up for the 2013 CBC Short Story Prize. Not surprisingly, Robertson includes these stories in her bold and diverse collection, which reads with both a youthful tone and a polish expected of life-long writers. The author displays a keen command of language, pushing and challenging her readers while disquieting them in the most satisfying ways.

"Where Have You Fallen, Have You Fallen?" includes eight short scenes that unfold in reverse chronological order, effectively building narrative tension. "The Art of Making One’s Self Agreeable: A Handbook for Ladies" reads like an etiquette manual to tell a story of violence and subterfuge within a marriage. "Ship’s Log" uses its titular form as imagined by a little boy to gradually reveal a story of loss and heartbreak.

The stories might differ in form and approach but they unite in human emotion: despair, hope, loss and, above all, heartbreak. And, by having to read in unexpected ways, the audience allows the emotional impact of the stories to creep in. Ultimately, everything comes together with a powerful, devastating and rewarding effect.

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