PositiveBook OxygenThis is an uncomfortable read, full of yearning but also of understandable bitterness. Hamya’s narrator wants so much, minds so much. On her train journey home, in a briefly empty carriage, she finally lets out her pain in a scream that reverberates long after the book is closed.
Paulina Flores, Trans. by Megan McDowell
PositiveBook OxygenThese are stealthy stories, all in their different ways quite shocking. Here, very definitely, the ‘sins’ of fathers and mothers are visited upon their daughters and sons. Parental sacrifice, failure, disappointment and compromise are seen through unforgiving eyes and tracked through their side-effects on the next generation.
PositiveBook OxygenNot for nothing does Patchett have a reputation for painful as well as compelling storytelling ... A story of loss, of ghosts, of what Danny calls ‘a house on fire’, The Dutch House brings closure of a sort but is not shy of leaving the facts of pain exposed.
RaveBookOxygen... immensely readable and immediate. Erskine’s voice is as specific and local as James Kelman’s and her tales are as memorably engaging as those of William Trevor or Muriel Spark ... Imaginative, poignant and compassionate. Highly recommended.
PositiveBook Oxygen\"This debut novel by a young writer in her twenties is a feat of imaginative sympathy and retrieval ... The combination here of gripping personal and political stories in an action-packed historical narrative amounts, as it did in Hilary Mantel’s A Place of Greater Safety, to an impressive achievement.\
PositiveBookOxygenWhether or not the echo is intended, this latest novel by Sadie Jones recalls the subject matter of François Mauriac’s classic story about inheritance, Le Noeud de Viperes. Atmospheric, suspenseful and very well calculated for a future screen version, The Snakes looks at the damage caused by money-lust ... This is a novel full of mental as well as of physical violence, in which one man stands out ... With its graphic luxury and squalor, its scary characters and its grasp of psychology, The Snakes looks ideal for development into a TV series comparable with The Killing.
RaveBookOxygen\"Here is another collection of leap-off-the-page, life-enhancing stories by the wonderful American writer Lucia Berlin ... Berlin’s frankness and humour apart, it is the power of observation that blows one’s mind ... One of the things she does is say the unsayable... She is also brilliant on the underside of glamour ... It is this combination of warmth and extremity that shines out in every word Lucia Berlin writes.\
PositiveBookOxygenIn passages of extraordinarily convincing interiority, Ruskovich shows Ann doggedly, lovingly, half-guiltily, trying to imagine how the crime happened, and why ... Ruskovich acknowledges among her chief influences two grandes dames of contemporary fiction: Marilynne Robinson and Alice Munro. One thinks also of Carol Shields, another great writer drawn to similar themes. Whatever you make of her puzzling story, her multiple truths, the quality of the writing shines out in page after page of vivid particularity. Definitely a writer to cherish and watch.