Reading the Stella Prize Shortlist – A Few Days in the Country: And Other Stories by Elizabeth Harrower


I’m back in familiar-short-story-territory with Elizabeth Harrower’s A Few Days in the Country and Other Stories. And that territory is uneven. Some of the stories in this collection shone but others, not so much. There are twelve stories, predominantly exploring the different roles of women – in friendship, as mothers and daughters, and as wives. Continue reading

Hot Little Hands by Abigail Ulman


I reckon short stories have a bigger job to do than novels – they have to hook you quickly, keep you, and hopefully leave a lasting, favourable impression, all in fewer words than a novel – there’s less time for backstory, less time for character development, and less time for plotting. And so I come to Abigail Ulman’s Hot Little Hands. It just didn’t keep me. At all. Continue reading

Christmas in Summer Reading Roulette


I’m chugging along quite nicely on my end-of-year-and-into-the-next reading challenge, Christmas in Summer. I reckon I’ll be able to squeeze in a few more books before the close of 2015, so I’m relying on you to help me pick what to read next.

Hit it (and you can justify your choice in the Comments section if you are festively procrastinating about something and have time to burn). Thanks.