Truthtelling, novelist Lynne Sharon Schwartz’s latest book, is subtitled Stories, Fables, Glimpses, and that is exactly what you get in this slim volume: more than two dozen vignettes, some of them quite brief. All the contents are set in New York and they sometimes remind me of extended versions of the New York Times’ Metropolitan Diary entries. A too-close encounter on a city bus; a woman who borrows her ex-husband’s car and then fails to return it, ever; an elderly neighbor leaves everything to a narrator who finds it more burdensome than not. Former lovers and partners meet again, possibly by chance. The author evidently unearthed the stories from her files (one is titled “fragment discovered in a charred steel box” and claims that the first fourteen pages have been lost) and each one has an almost other-worldly aspect to it as if the narrators are not quite grounded in reality. Somehow, despite when they were written, many of them hit home during these strange morose months of 2020. As Schwartz writes in the story “Near November”: “We cling to our stories, we take root in our stories like the nymph took root in a tree and became its prisoner. Unlike her, we will regain our shapes—almost.” Some of these stories will continue to cling to me while others disappear from memory soon after reading, leaving only a sense of loss or bewilderment.
This page was created by an City Book Review staff member.
|Author||Lynne Sharon Schwartz|
|Page Count||240 pages|
|Amazon||Buy this Book|
|Category||Poetry & Short Stories|