Synopses & Reviews
What Keeps Me Here is a collection of stories about relationships between childhood friends, between lovers, between the warring parts of the self. In "The Aqua Series," a woman is transformed from a creator of paintings to a creation of her paintings. "A Mark" examines the effect of a forgotten past on a pair of lovers. "Someone Else" is a monologue in the voice of someone inhabited by a foreign spirit. The narrator of "A Severing" tries to repair the physical damage of a failed relationship. The prose moves between stark realism and the shimmering surrealism of fairy tales or dreams to create an emotional landscape and vision of life that is as true, startling, and original as that of any writer today. Written with the same spare beauty and precision that have brought Brown's fiction such acclaim, What Keeps Me Here is a haunting and unforgettable book.
"Ms. Brown's percussive language provides the background for startling metaphors about the control of one lover by another, the wounds of the past over the promise of the future, art over artist, the unknown over the familiar." Abby Frucht, The New York Times Book Review
"The ten haunting pieces collected here apply a gothic surrealism to the commonplace matters of the heart....[Brown's] tales match a highly original imagination with style and intelligence." Kirkus Reviews
"Although a few of the stories are self-consciously elliptical or annoyingly arch, Brown is a provocative writer whose intense imagination invests these tales with eerie menace." Publishers Weekly
The award-winning author of The Gifts of the Body presents a collection of short stories, some previously published, about a variety of relationships between lovers, friends, and aspects of the self.
Table of Contents
Someone Else 1
The Aqua Series 5
The Princess and the Pea 63
A Mark 75
A Severing 81
An Enchantment 89
A Relationship 109
What Keeps Me Here 129