Synopses & Reviews
Margo Lanagan's electrifying stories take place in worlds not quite our own, and yet each one illuminates what it is to be human. They are stories of yearning for more, and learning to live with what you have. Stories that show the imprint love leaves on us all.
If you think you don't like short fiction, that a story can't have the depth or impact of a novel, then you haven't read Margo Lanagan. A writer this startling and this original doesn't come along very often. So for anyone who likes to be surprised, touched, unsettled, intrigued, or scared senseless, prepare to be dazzled by what a master storyteller can do in a few short pages.
"Lanahan, whose Black Juice won critical acclaim both in her native Australia and in the U.S., will further enhance her reputation with this fine second collection of 10 stories. Driven by beautiful, often quirky language and deep psychological insight, these works demonstrate a powerful sense of the marvelous. In 'Baby Jane,' a boy on holiday hears a magical servant shout, 'My queen is in difficulties. Is there a midwife here?... Any kind of leech, any wise woman,' and finds himself in charge of delivering a royal child; a different sort of child, an emotionally needy girl who fears she will 'die of her distress' after being separated from her mother for a night, must show some gumption and outwit the terrifying, baby-eating ogre Wee Willie Winkie in 'Winkie.' Other memorable characters include the dead souls in Limbo, who in 'Under Hell, Over Heaven' earn brownie points by transporting the recently deceased to their final reward or punishment; and the eponymous 'Daughter of the Clay,' an unhappy changeling who travels to fairyland and decides in the end that it's best for her 'to stay silent, on my bottom among the Clay, and fill my mouth with fish.' Gritty, dark and sometimes very nasty, these stories are, at their best, worthy of comparison to the fairy tales of Angela Carter. Ages 14-up." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
About the Author
Margo Lanagan is a highly acclaimed writer of novels, short stories, and poetry. Black Juice, her second collection of stories, won a Printz Honor Award and the World Fantasy Award for Best Collection. Ms. Lanagan lives in Sydney, Australia.