Review: A Bookish Way of Life (The Marzipan Fruit Basket)
The stories in this collection are unified by a sense of dislocation. In each of the pieces, there is an underlying element of disturbance and disharmony. Resolution conscious choices and come to terms with new realities. A perspective that views the complexity of life journeys as a manifestation of intentional decisions, circumstances beyond one’s control, and the need to reflect upon the combination of both in order to become fully realized, drives the narrative voices.
“Water don’t always quench a deep thirst,” speaks one of her characters, but Lucy E.M. Black’s characters are a fresh drink of water in all their complexities. This collection is a glass brimming full with heartfelt narratives of people piloting through the denseness of life. Beautifully dark and light and honest and deep in the vulnerabilities we dwell in and share. A charming and gifted new voice in the growing landscape of Canadian literature.” —Gianna Patriarca, Gianna Patriarca, author of Italian Women and Other Tragedies and All My Fallen Angelas
“There will be no need for an editor to red-line superfluous text in Lucy Black’s debut story collection, The Marzipan Basket. Stories drive in a straight-line narrative, drawing, pulling, the reader into an emotionally epiphanic event in the life of the protagonist, often interwoven with that of an I-narrator and, with strong images, revealing a depth of feeling you will recall and relate to from your own experience. Ever-present in the lives of the characters are the pain and consequences of abuse, cruelty, indifference, abandonment, loss and loneliness, struggle, poverty, and love. These stories reflect moments in time; slices-of-life to which there are no resolutions; in this, author Lucy Black trusts her readers to envisage their own coda.” —Rhoda Rabinowitz Green, author of Slowly I Turn, Moon Over Mandalay, and Aspects of Nature
“Lucy Black arrives into the world of Can Lit with this compilation of beautifully written short stories that speak to the heart-felt intimacies of both her characters and her readers.” —Donna Morrissey, author of The Fortunate Brother
Short stories are where its at and The Marzipan Fruit Basket by Lucy E. M. Black proves that fact to a tee. This lovely tome filled with twenty-four wonderful stories is Canadian Lit at its best! I just loved dipping in and out of this book every day – reading a story a day felt like such a treat (plus, I didn’t want to run out of them so quickly.) They were beautifully written, chock full of emotion, and so relatable with their topics of loneliness, abuse, and loss. Talk about a cornucopia of feelings! I found myself unable to stop thinking about what I was reading – it was fantastic!
Black has created a collection of short stories that are simply put…top notch. The writing is strong, clear, and bursting with life. The characters are flawed, realistic, and unforgettable. And the stories themselves are just addictive. This is one book that you will not want to miss out on.
I would happily recommend The Marzipan Fruit Basket to fans of short stories and anyone looking for their next great read – you will LOVE this book!!
Here’s the link to the TLC Book Tour schedule for: The Marzipan Fruit Basket