A collection of highly imaginative short pieces that speak to our times with deadly accuracy. Vintage Atwood creativity, intelligence, and humor: think Alias Grace.
Margaret Atwood turns to short fiction for the first time since her 2006 collection, Moral Disorder, with nine tales of acute psychological insight and turbulent relationships bringing to mind her award-winning 1996 novel, Alias Grace. A recently widowed fantasy writer is guided through a stormy winter evening by the voice of her late husband in "Alphinland," the first of three loosely linked stories about the romantic geometries of a group of writers and artists. In "The Freeze-Dried Bridegroom," a man who bids on an auctioned storage space has a surprise. In "Lusus Naturae," a woman born with a genetic abnormality is mistaken for a vampire. In "Torching the Dusties," an elderly lady with Charles Bonnet syndrome comes to terms with the little people she keeps seeing, while a newly formed populist group gathers to burn down her retirement residence. And in "Stone Mattress," a long-ago crime is avenged in the Arctic via a 1.9 billion-year-old stromatolite. In these nine tales, Margaret Atwood is at the top of her darkly humorous and seriously playful game.
List of Stories and Narrators:
· "Alphinland" and "Torching the Dusties" read by Lorna Raver
· "Revenant" read by Mark Bramhall
· "Dark Lady" and "The Dead Hand Loves You" read by Arthur Morey
· "Lusus Naturae" read by Emily Rankin
· "The Freeze-Dried Groom" read by Rob Delaney
· "I Dream of Zenia with the Bright Red Teeth" read by Bernadette Dunne
· "Stone Mattress" read by Margaret Atwood
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by Margaret Atwood
by Margaret MacMillan
by Emily Midorikawa, Emma Claire Sweeney, Margaret Atwood
"Nine provocative tales are divided among seven utterly capable voices. The result is an often startling, sometimes humorous, and always satisfying exploration of the human condition. Lorna Raver is clearly energized and engaged with the characters, and her low-pitched voice lends itself well to the stories that open and close the collection, each featuring an older woman who is struggling to balance reality and imagination. Also performing double duty, Arthur Morey is deliberate with pace and pronunciation as he navigates the murky intersection of biography and storytelling. Though sheÕs tasked with the shortest story, Emily Rankin's memorable performance belies the innocence of a character whose genetic condition is mistaken for vampirism. The highlight is Margaret Atwood's reading of the titular story. Her understated delivery and low tones are a chilling combination in this pointed tale of revenge. A.S. © AudioFile 2014, Portland, Maine"
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