Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Company of Heaven: Stories from haiti by Marilène Phipps-Kettlewell (2010)

The always intriguing LibraryThing Early Reviewers program recently sent me a copy of Marilène Phipps-Kettlewell's short story collection The Company of Heaven: Stories from Haiti (October 2010).

Besides writing short stories, Phipps-Kettlewell is a visual artist and poet (you can see some examples of her work on her web site), and her work in these other artistic mediums is reflected in her often lyrical storytelling and economical description. While most of the stories stand alone, there is a subtle interlocking of characters and events that strings through the collection. Her narrative criss-crosses her native country of Haiti, touching on the black and the white, the rich and the poor, the old and the young. All the stories were interesting and readable, and some (like "Dogs," "River Valley Rooms," and "At the Gate") were just about perfect. Definitely worth a look.

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