Ashley's Reviews > Little Black Book of Stories

Little Black Book of Stories by A.S. Byatt
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's review
Sep 24, 2007

it was amazing
bookshelves: favorites, thesis, fiction, short-stories, literary-fiction
Read in July, 2004

I first discovered A.S. Byatt's work a few years ago when I picked up this book, quite honestly because the cover was pretty. This little volume hooked me into her style right away, and I've devoured all of her other works since.
Her short stories have a quality that is so unique - many of them are set in the real world that we know, but have that one element of fantasy, mystery, or horror that tips them over the edge and makes for fascinating writing. "A Stone Woman" is my favorite in this collection, the story of a woman who, in her grief for her mother (and after a minor operation of her own), finds that she is slowly becoming encrusted in a kind of stone casing that slowly encompasses her whole self. The descriptions of her transformation are so vivid you can almost feel the crystals on your own skin, and hear them clinking as the woman moves.
Each story is a work in its own right, and each has its own merit as a piece of art. If I remember correctly, a review inside the book calls the stories "gems," which is precisely what they are - gems of stories to be discovered and treasured. If you're looking for an introduction to Byatt's style and artistry, this one is for you.
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07/23/2016 marked as: read

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