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Demi-Gods Cover

Mirrored Bodies: Reflecting on Eliza Robertson’s Demi-Gods

Demi-Gods
Eliza Robertson
Penguin Random House, 2017
Review by Kyle Schoenfeld

Eliza Robertson’s debut novel Demi-Gods is the story of Willa, a girl growing up in British Columbia in the 1950s and ‘60s. In luminous prose, Robertson shows her protagonist’s formation in a world set on teaching her about others’ power to shape her. Willa finds this restrictive power crystallized in Patrick, the son of her mother’s boyfriend and a monstrous presence who slinks into rooms and haunts the summers of the narrator’s childhood. As a parable of the oppressive weight of other people’s desire, Demi-Gods is lush and compelling, however unsettling it may be to read.

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Eliza Robertson on Writing, Winning PRISM’s Fiction Contest, and Her New Book

Eliza RobertsonNow that the deadline for our non-fiction contest has passed, we’ve turned our attention to our upcoming fiction and poetry contests—you’ve got until January 23, 2014 to enter!

Eliza Robertson won the fiction award in 2010. We recently contacted her to find out what she’s been working on since then.

I loved “Roadnotes.” I have a soft spot for epistolary stories, and this one concludes in Missouri, my home state. How did this story come about, and how did winning PRISM‘s fiction contest help with your writing career?

I get nervous when someone says they’re from the location I’ve set a story in. Especially if I have never been here, and that location is the Show Me State. I’m relieved to hear you liked it! I believe I began writing the piece in 2009, while I was volunteering in Tanzania. We did a lot of driving that summer, so perhaps the rhythm of the road got into me. I could not have been in a more incongruous landscape (to the American Midwest) but I did collect certain details. The field of “burnt-out” sunflowers, for one.
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