Eleven stories comprise this collection. They were selected for quality of writing rather than adherence to any motif or theme. Thus, they cut a wide swath through all manner of timeframes, environments, events, and emotions. In addition to first-rate writing, there is however another element that links them all together. That element is an exploration of the inner self—a searing examination of what makes us behave the way we do—and the consequences that result from such behavior.
Here are just some of the frames that enclose exceptional storytelling within them. A woman tries to rebuild a broken life. A man’s declining faculties send him on a trip beyond his understanding. An ex-soldier sinks into depression while his wife scratches for life wherever she can find it. A girl agrees to help a childless couple become parents, but why? A son faces his father’s homosexuality. A professor and his guide find the unexpected. An adolescent searches for his true self. Brothers share a passion that leads one to betrayal, the other to revenge. A woman trying to help her family risks losing the man she loves. A cemetery worker’s daily routine can’t keep his past from being exhumed. The veneer of a newlywed’s near perfect existence is slowly cracking as a haunting memory refuses to die.
These stories are for individuals interested in the beauty of language. While writing styles differ from one to the other, they all are filled with the power of poignancy. Some of these tales end surprisingly, some finish as if their outcome was preordained. All however, remind us that excellent stories depend less on length and more on breath—of the storyteller.