Saturday, April 11, 2009

Mavis Gallant

Randy Boyagoda Reviews Gallant's Newest Collection

In today's National Post, Randy Boyagoda reviews the latest collection from Mavis Gallant, a sometimes forgotten Canadian short story writer. Boyagoda's verdict is good:
To describe Going Ashore as a collection of the “missing” stories of Mavis Gallant, as Douglas Gibson does in his prefatory note, is to suggest only two possibilities to the reader: Either these stories have never appeared in book form because they didn’t match the superior quality of those stories that made up Gallant’s earlier works — such lapidary collections as The Pegnitz Junction, From The Fifteenth District and Home Truths, not to mention her 900-page Selected Stories; or, as Douglas himself proposes, there simply wasn’t enough space in any of the prior collections for these uncollected stories, which are just as strong. As a stay against disappointment, one can’t but approach this new collection presuming the former while hoping for the latter. Good news. Going Ashore rewards that hope.

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