Wednesday, February 20, 2008

BOOK: All in Together Girls by Kate Sutherland

All in Together Girls by Kate Sutherland

short story challenge, Canadian Reading Challenge: Saskatchewan

I really enjoyed this collection of short stories by Kate, who happens to be hosting the short story challenge over here. The girl knows short stories. And these stories are all about girls - young, teens, young women, and their mothers. There was a familiarity to the voice in many of the tales. What I liked about these were snippets that stayed with me because they rang so true. I was driving the other day trying to remember where I'd read about a girl writing in a diary, how she was dismissed as someone who only wrote about the present, not the future. What book was that? Gradually, I remembered the story it came from("The Story of Her Life.") I expect there will be more little scenes replayed in my mind, like the dinner party from "Aerial View of a Dinner Party."

"Making Love While the Kettle Boils" was my favorite story, which surprised me. I'm not usually a fan of the love at first sight, wild passionate love stories. I hated Romeo and Juliet in high school because I thought it was stupid, not romantic, to kill yourself over someone you've just met. I'm more logical, even tempered, would rather ride the train than the roller coaster. However, every now and then, I get it. I see it portrayed in a way that makes sense to me. The English Patient movie is the one that stands out to me, but this short story did it for me as well. The crossword clues progressively changed as the tenor of the relationship changed, and then crashed, because for some reason, these romantic love affairs have to end tragically to be considered a true love affair. That is my problem with those love stories. But, as I read this one, I believed, and I really liked it.

I think I'll keep this little collection and revisit it from time to time. Thanks, Kate.