Tag: short stories

A review of The End of the Circle by Walter Cummins

These are bitter stories. All of the men, women, and children of the stories are imprisoned by circumstances. Redemption for the reader is in Cummins’s pitiless depiction of his doomed characters. Truth is what matters and he makes truth transcendent.

A review of What Came Between by Patrick Cullen

Almost more important than the major transitions in these lives are the impact of day to day living – the dust that fills the pores; the washing of clothing; the purchasing of art. What makes this work distinctive is the intensity of the narrative gaze. We learn about the characters through an almost anthropomorphic rendering of the natural world they observe.

A review of The Best Australian Stories 2006

Good short fiction works a quite a different dimension to novels – it needs a fast denouement, and the language has to be sharper, cleaner, more exacting because of the limited space. All of this stories in this collection are complete – leaving the reader with some kind of denoument. Drewe has chosen well, and the book contains a good range of material, from the modern to the traditional, funny, serious, intense, lighthearted – funky or political.

A review of Every Move You Make by David Malouf

Although “The Domestic Cantata” is the most complex and extraordinary of the stories in this collection, all of the stories are set off by Malouf’s clear love of life that underpins the work. The plots move easily and the characters all develop forward, but it is the collective meaning created by the glimpse at something that goes beyond the prose that builds these stories that makes them so remarkable. This is a not to be missed collection of stories that are as important as they are pleasurable.

A review of You Are Going Away edited by Matthew Ward

Most of the stories, and particularly the three winners, have all of those qualities: are tightly structured with a conflict that pulls the reader in and drives the narrative forward, leading carefully and conclusively towards the ending. Interestingly, a large…

A review of The Best Australian Stories 2005

This is an accessible collection with stories that almost always add up to something which wasn’t there before. The economy and careful construction of this work is one which a serious reader will appreciate–Moorhouse has chosen well–but overall, what is…

A review of Still Life in Motion by Sean Brijbasi

The arrangement of the many stories in Still Life is an adventure in itself. The groupings have titles and the succession is ‘stories about something,’ ‘stories about nothing,’ ‘stories about things that might have happened,’ ‘true stories,’ stories about things…

A review of The Best Australian Stories 2003

Creating a short story is a serious and compelling skill, and when it is done correctly, creates a powerful moment for the reader, full of the kind of intensity which can change the way we look at the world. Despite…