Little, Brown & Co., 2004 (2004)
Read an Excerpt
Reviewed by Sally Selvadurai
fter the high praise Michael Redhill garnered for
, I found the stories in
disappointing. Redhill's character Tom Lumsden (who appears in two stories, '
' and '
') never really develops; we are left wondering what the author is trying to portray, but maybe that's the point – Tom Lumsden is insecure about whether his life is the one he really wants to be leading.
his is the essence of the book - insecure people struggling with their feelings and the events of their lives, seeming to be adrift in a sea of hopelessness. There are the parents of the teenage daughter who has betrayed their trust with her unhealthy sexual practices. A writer escapes his own romantic disaster only to be confronted by the meltdown of other people's involvements. These accounts leave the reader, along with the characters, with little hope for the future. Even in the story '
' about an unusually gifted child, we are left wondering if there is any hope for the relationship between the parents and their child or even between the parents themselves.
hese short stories are not in any sense
. They will not lift your spirits, but are more likely to bring them down, to the tedium of everyday existence, the monotony of spousal relationships, the nagging uncertainty of all our personal interactions. Though
was not a fun read, it does faithfully capture certain aspects of human nature – at its most depressing.
Note: Opinions expressed in reviews and articles on this site are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of BookLoons.
Find more Contemporary books on our
or in our book