The Grandmothers : Four Short Novels
3 journalers for this copy...
"The Grandmothers: Two women, close friends, fall in love with each other's teenage sons, and these passions last for years, until the women end them, promising a respectable old age." "Victoria and the Staveneys: A poor black girl has a baby with the son of a liberal middle-class family and finds that her little girl is slowly being absorbed into the world of white privilege and becoming estranged from her." "The Reason for It: Certain to appeal to fans of Shikasta and Memoirs of a Survivor, it describes the birth, flourishing, and decline of a culture long, long ago, but with many modern echoes." A Love Child: A soldier in World War II, during the dangerous voyage to India around the Cape, falls in love on shore leave and remains convinced that a love child resulted from the wartime romance.
CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:
RABCK on the way to princess-peapod
taking to our local Bookcrossers meeting, if not picked up by another BC'er then it will be left on the shelf for another to enjoy!
I enjoy a well written short story and found these to be quite interesting though would readily admit the subject matter may not be for everyone. The title "novel" is the story of two friends who fall in love with each other's teenage sons...and yes it is as odd as it sounds, but this was my favorite story amongst the 4.
taking to a meeting at the zone, if not picked up it will be left for another to enjoy!
"A book is a mysterious object, I said, and once it floats out into the world, anything can happen. All kinds of mischief can be caused, and there's not a damned thing you can do about it. For better or worse, it's completely out of your control."
In this case, just one of the stories - The Reason For It - reeks of a kind of moral position. It is the story of a civilization from long ago, where education and work become of little interest to the primary leader and over time to the citizens. Little by little the fabric of the community becomes frayed and there is nobody to care, except "the old ones", including the last of "the twelve".
I can't disagree that a lack of intelligence and learning and a lack of appreciation for work is going to send a community down the tubes. The story does seem heavy-handed, though.
I rather liked the title story - the Grandmothers - in spite of the subject matter, which I admit is a little out there. There is a nice sense of the characters and an emotional charge that's hard to forget.
I liked the other two stories as well, perhaps most especially A Love Child. In his youth, a WWII soldier is sent to India to keep the peace (not where he would prefer to be given that the actual war was elsewhere). He is a bit naive in the world of love, and when he falls for a young married Englishwoman there, he believes it is forever. Over the years he cannot get her or her son (clearly his son) out of his mind.
Twice he travels to India to find his lover and his son, the second time with his understanding wife. With this kind of single-minded focus, though, can this man ever find peace?
WILD RELEASE NOTES: