300 short stories: story 268

story: “Contract Overseas”

author: Mia Alvar

year: 2015

where: Bagdad Theater on Hawthorne Blvd.

note: I love brother sister sibling stories. This collection was recommended to me in Aspen.

a line:  “After the cafés closed, they spilled into the dormitories to prolong such life-and-death debates as whether literature had social duties, as Salvador Lopez believed, or whether art’s only obligation was to art itself, as Jose Garcia Villa did.”

theme(s): Siblings, sacrifice, education, womanhood, writing

Advertisements

300 short stories: story 267

story: “What the World Will Look Like When All the Water Leaves Us”

author: Laura van den Berg

year: 2010

where: Reed College

note: I have been time-sharing under a rock; this is my first read by the author, though I’ve known her existence for a long time now. I was fortunate to hear her read last night at Tin House.

a line:  “Madagascar was not the first expedition on which I had accompanied my mother.”

theme(s): Mothers and daughters, adventure, separation, loss, survival, aging

300 short stories: story 263

story: “Bullet in the Brain”

author: Tobias Wolff

year: 1995

where: Aspen

note: Reread! Breathtaking.

a line:  “He did not remember Professor Josephs telling his class how Athenian prisoners in Sicily had been released if they could recite Aeschylus, and then reciting Aeschylus himself, right there, in the Greek.”

theme(s): Society, Memory, Death, Joy

300 short stories: story 262

story: “Blame”

author: Aimee Bender

year: 2019

where: California Zephyr Train

note: From the last issue of Tin House

a line: “Buy more, said the lady. Rich lady. Come back to Yum-Yum. Eat yum-yum. Clog your arteries. Enjoy life.”

theme(s): Miscarriage, class, wealth, blame

300 short stories: story 261

story: “The Girl Who Did Not Know Fear”

author: Kelly Link

year: 2019

where: California Zephyr Train

note: From the last issue of Tin House

a line: “They don’t have sex shops in Quebec? After that, Martine went through this whole phrase.”

theme(s): Mothers and Daughters, Queer relationships, travel, fear