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Dust of the Universe, tales of family

4.86  ·  Rating Details ·  7 Ratings  ·  4 Reviews
Commended — SPR Awards 2014

Family. Inescapable, universal, defining. Whether near or far, family can evoke feelings of love or resentment, trust or regret—but never indifference.

In sixteen unforgettable stories, V.S. Kemanis lays bare the conflicts and joys of family life, exploring the depth and intractability of interpersonal relationships. A mysterious aunt is buried wi
Paperback, 324 pages
Published September 26th 2015 by Opus Nine Books (first published November 12th 2012)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-13)
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Sheela Word
Beautiful literary short stories. My favorite three are "Zephyr," which describes, with perfect realism, a transitional point in a child's life; "Reckoning," in which a highly private man is subjected to a tax audit; and the agonizingly sad title story about a family's long goodnight. I loved them.
V.S. Kemanis
Feb 14, 2016 V.S. Kemanis rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
A note from the author:

Of my three collections of short fiction, "Dust of the Universe" is closest to my heart.

I'd like to share with GR members a five-star review from SPReview which was posted on the Amazon page:

"A great talent" (posted February 21, 2013, by SPR)

"There are rare occasions when you find yourself in the hands of an author so unarguably gifted that your critical faculties are temporarily cut off. Within pages, you've slipped into the experience that all books promise but few deliv
Mar 08, 2013 Grady rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Interstices of Family Connections

V.S. Kemanis is a writer new to this reader - but I doubt that will be a viable statement now - after reading the little miracle stories that comprise DUST OF THE UNIVERSE. Somehow she manages to open dusty old memories of experiences shared in our own family history by concocting this group of stories about the special interactions that happens among family members. And it is only if we are honest about our own familial stories that we can truly appreciate s
Suneeta Misra
Apr 22, 2013 Suneeta Misra rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Full Review of each individual short story at

As a whole, I loved this short story collection, and I could not give it any less than 5 stars. I enjoyed several stories, especially the first and last one, immensely, and still felt that the others were very well done. The collection is a very realistic look at different families and their varied situations and struggles. Several stories had unexpected (and pleasantly surprising) endings. In technical terms, the book was
Cecilia Dunbar Hernandez
Cecilia Dunbar Hernandez rated it it was amazing
Apr 16, 2016
Kevin Stamey
Kevin Stamey rated it it was amazing
Feb 23, 2016
Roxy Nakamura
Roxy Nakamura rated it really liked it
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V.S. Kemanis is a California native and currently resides in New York. She holds a B.A. in Sociology from the University of California at Berkeley, and a J.D. from the University of Colorado School of Law at Boulder. In her legal career she has been a criminal prosecutor for county and state agencies, argued criminal appeals for the prosecution and defense, conducted complex civil litigation, and ...more
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“Maybe,' she said, 'we should just enjoy our fantasies for what they are, without making them into lost opportunities.” 0 likes
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