Written in clear, singing and exuberant prose, Hannah Vincent’s first collection of short stories shines with the qualities that made her debut novel Alarm Girl a critical and popular success.
Ordinary lives are transformed in these stories as women try to be themselves while clowning around for others. Exhilarated to discover the joy and surprise of other women’s company, they make bold sexual choices and go on night-time excursions; they give unsuitable presents.
In ‘Portrait of the Artist’ creative energy vibrates through different members of a household while a workplace initiation in ‘Carnival’ elicits contrasting responses from two friends. ‘The Poison Frog’ highlights a shift of power in a mother-daughter relationship and ‘G-lorious’ considers a future where dreams and reality are indistinguishable.
Compassionate and occasionally surreal, these stories are written with a female gaze and feature everyday heroines from early womanhood to old age. Full of witty surprises, small triumphs and rebellions in the face of adversity, the collection establishes Hannah Vincent as one of the freshest voices in contemporary fiction.