Book review

You Let Me In, by Camilla Bruce You can read the opening here (‘look inside’). This is a deeply disturbing novel. The protagonist, novelist Cassandra Tipp, has vanished, leaving behind what is essentially a memoir, a document containing two competing narratives about her life. In one story, Cassie tells of a vampiric 1,000-year old faerieContinue reading “Book review”

A short story I recently re-read

‘The Island at Noon’ by Julio Cortázar (translated by Suzanne Jill Levine) Read it here in about 25 minutes. Thinking about using time in narrative…  The protagonist in this story, Marini, is a flight steward who has become obsessed with a Greek island called Xiros, which he flies over on one of his regular routes.Continue reading “A short story I recently re-read”

Three novels with interesting structures

I love reading books and stories with interesting structures. Here are three good examples: Beloved, by Toni Morrison You can read the opening here. This beautiful and brutal novel captures some of the horrors of slavery, and its aftermath. Protagonist Sethe is haunted by the past – brought up a motherless slave, life on theContinue reading “Three novels with interesting structures”

A short story I recently read

Where Are You Going, Where Have you Been?, by Joyce Carol Oates Read it here in about an hour. Analysis: Thinking about meanings and endings… I’ve been reading quite a bit of Oates recently, in honour of Halloween month. This short story is typical of her writing: there’s something sinister, something dangerous, and plenty ofContinue reading “A short story I recently read”

A short story I recently read

The Upstairs People, by Laura van den Berg Available here. Read it in about 20 minutes. Analysis: Thinking about time and structure…  This story begins in the present – one year after the unnamed narrator’s father died. Then, only three sentences in, we jump back, and the narrator details a strange dream about her fatherContinue reading “A short story I recently read”