a death in kitchawank

This week’s issue of The New Yorker came packed with articles I was looking forward to reading (Woody Allen! Malcolm Gladwell! A profile on the sisters behind the Rodarte line!). But, best of all: fiction by T. Coraghessan Boyle. I love discovering new authors here, but I love a solid story from a revered story-teller even more.

1/18/10 – A Death in Kitchawank, T. Coraghessan Boyle.  I’ll try not to say this in every post, but…this was my favorite story, so far. Can’t help thinking: “this is how you write a short story!”.  Incredibly well-written; a quiet tone capturing little snapshots of a suburban housewife’s life; poetry disguised as prose. Tragedy is expected and implied in the title, but I thought the whole story was slightly depressing (that’s a strong word; maybe “heavy” is better?). The narration moves forward rapidly, offering a single scene from various stages in this woman’s life, most recounted from inside her home. It’s all so realistic (and maybe that’s why it felt heavy)…this woman could represent hundreds of others just like her. But, Boyle quietly weaves unique moments in and around the normalcy, making each and every detail burst with meaning. Must stop here, as I don’t want to share too much/give anything away. Do give it a read, though. A favorite line: “The tragic days of our lives, the days of accounting, begin like any other, with routine, with the bagel in the toaster and the coffee on the stove.


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