It’s that time again. Here are some stories I’ve enjoyed reading in the past few weeks.
The Antigonish Review, Issue 176
“The Fantasy” by Mark Sampson: A young boy observes the strange behaviour (inappropriate drinking, fits of self-pity, etc.) of a writer who lives in his small hometown. Funny, emotionally layered, and satisfying.
The New Quarterly, Issue 129
“Just Fish” by Teryl Faulkner: A incredibly rich character portrait of a middle-aged nurse, who is the sort of stodgy, relentlessly conventional person literary writers often treat with derision or condescension. Faulkner commits no such sin and reveals her main character as deeply complex and relatable in her flaws and quiet ambitions.
“When You Finally Know Me” by Trisha Cull: A non-fiction piece addressed to the author’s father, who she met for the first time in early twenties. Cull covers a lot of ground in this memoir. In the earliest scene she is two years old and the piece ends in the present day. Nonetheless, the piece feels sharp and complete and we never get bogged down in extraneous details. A good lesson in how to structure short non-fiction pieces and how to be judicious with background information.
Taddle Creek, Issue 31
“Apoptosis” by Becky Blake: A woman gives birth to a baby mermaid. Funny, inventive, and surprisingly poignant.
Room, Issue 37.1
“Colour” by Katherine Koller: An artsy teenager girl in her all-black-clothing phase goes on a date with an older jock. A thoughtful, voice-driven piece that will be eerily relatable to any readers who used to be moody teenage girls.
And of course, check out these wonderful pieces by PRISM-ites: