On the flight back from Burkina Faso I got to read three short stories from old issues of The New Yorker that I found in the FAVL office, leftovers from 2014!
“Story with Bird” by Kevin Canty is an amazing 2 page exercise in capturing a relationship with remarkable style. I am not sure the “animal eyes in the dark” bit worked. But much of the writing was like seeing a master technician at work! Tremendous review by Betsey over at Mookse.
“Rosendale” by Paul La Farge. I was less taken with this story. Very deliberate writing about writing, this time a horror story. Stops and starts and breaking of boundaries, and pretty interesting. But I did find myself skipping about. She’s writing a book but she’s also a crack-addicted pole dancer? Trevor did not like it either, over at Mookse, and he has reasonable reasons.
“Ordinary Sins” by Kirsten Valdez Quade. Really this one went over to Raymond Carver territory big time (or to go the other direction, Breaking the Waves), and was just too much setup for a brief, quiet moment of two people holding each other. Mookse commentators and I part ways on this story.