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Sunday, 6 June 2010
Some New Ambush
by Carys Davies
'Some New Ambush' is an extraordinary collection of short stories from award-winning writer Carys Davies.
Ranging in length from two to twelve pages, her stories take us on a tour of the emotions: humour, disappointment, joy, love, resentment, revenge and utter, heart-wrenching sadness.
Featured on the shortlist for several prestigious prizes, this is Davies’ debut collection and it reveals her as an imaginative and playful talent. Sometimes the stories build slowly to their climax and sometimes they turn on a dime, but each is a beautiful depiction of a world – be it real or really fantastic – and the lives, dreams and frailties of the people living within it.
My favourites include a story of marriage and friendship in modern day Chicago, a portrait of a woman’s love for her dog and a beautiful vignette about whalers in the early twentieth century. Each is written in delicious yet sparing prose that encourages the reader to savour the story slowly, like a sweet treat or a savoury canapé. I found myself sitting on station platforms to finish a piece before catching my next train and some of the stories lived with me for days, demanding that I pause before reading on.
It’s been a while since I read any short stories but this collection has really reignited my love for the form and I recommend it highly.
Reviewed by Claire Marriott who blogs as Bucks Writer
'Some New Ambush' is published by Salt. You can find their website here.