One of the most acclaimed writers of our day, award-winning author Elizabeth McCracken is an undisputed virtuoso of the short story, and this new collection features her most vibrant and heartrending work to date.
In these stories, the mysterious bonds of family are tested, transformed, fractured, and fortified. A recent widower and his adult son ferry to a craggy Scottish island in search of puffins. An actress who plays a children's game-show villainess ushers in the New Year with her deadbeat half brother. A mother, pining for her children, feasts on loaves of challah to fill the void. A new couple navigates a tightrope walk toward love. And on a trip to a Texas water park with their son, two fathers each confront a personal fear.
With sentences that crackle and spark and showcase her trademark wit, McCracken traces how our closely held desires-for intimacy, atonement, comfort-bloom and wither against the indifferent passing of time. Her characters embark on journeys that leave them indelibly changed-and so do her readers. The Souvenir Museum showcases the talents of one of our finest contemporary writers as she tenderly takes the pulse of our collective and individual lives.
[A] sly, emotionally complex collection . . . Each story opens to reveal a whole life spent within the web of a family, chosen or not. Full of gems, this collection is a winner.
Do yourself a favour and read the book. McCracken has delivered a lovely collection of stories loosely tied together by one theme - the bonds of family that fracture and heal as lives are led.
McCracken has a real talent for exploring what makes an individual unusual when they are entwined with another person, and her stories are sparkling gems of human eccentricity.
[McCracken] has a gift for spotting the comic potential in situations many of us have endured... Her prose is stippled with just-so observations.
McCracken is a totally assured performer: even seemingly throwaway perceptions are often memorably poetic, and there is a hint of melancholy under the comedy.