From the Back Cover:
A collection of short fiction from one of the most distinctive contemporary voices in Canada today.
John Metcalf’s work reflects a world that is both fascinating and flawed…Nature is beautiful – but its very vitality can leave those who appreciate it stranded in their own isolation. Opportunities for self-discovery abound – but understanding is often accompanied by alienation…Concentrating equally on precise natural details and the shadowy rituals of loneliness, Metcalf’s writing is resonant with the unique dualities of an individual vision.
Frequently, the ambiguities of Metcalf’s themes are mirrored in the eccentricities of his characters. There is the housekeeper who moves from home to home, selling off the family furnishings before she leaves; the Boer War veteran whose secret joy is bags of rusting keys; or the young psychiatric patient who strives to preserve a private experience by making an art of bogus amnesia. All of them are here – brought to colourful life by Metcalf’s lucid, evocative prose. The combination of intriguing subject and skilfully handled style makes this book a collection to remember.