Canadian fiction, Canadian authors (Fiction), Short stories
A collection of linked short stories inspired by the paintings of Alex Colville. Each character appears in at least two of the stories, in a greater or lesser role. The most common link is a ghost who directly or indirectly… "haunts" the book throughout. There is more than a hint of the uncanny in some of the stories, and a strong whiff of the gothic. At its lightest, this book is dark, reflecting the edgy, distrubing quality found in much of Alex Colville's work. The common theme is the vulnerability of the elder heart. Many of the characters are aged sixty and up. Inwardly, however, they are ageless--yearning for each other sexually and emotionally, falling in and out of love, forming new ties or rediscovering old ones. Not all characters are human - a dog, a horse, and an octopus play small but pivotal roles. Death is a constant, taking both peaceful and violent forms. Its presence renders the characters' lives and relationships all the more poignant for being ephemeral. 2018.