Lizzy Chandler's Reviews > A Few Days in the Country and Other Stories

A Few Days in the Country and Other Stories by Elizabeth Harrower
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Jan 07, 2017

it was amazing

My first AWW challenge read for the year: A Few Days in the Country: And Other Stories by Elizabeth Harrower. I'm fascinated by the post-war world of working women in Sydney that Harrower draws on in this collection. Her sharp observation of character and the way she conveys nuances of relationships, especially between women, make these stories compelling reading.

My favourite was probably the penultimate story, "It is Margaret", the title inspired by one of my favourite poems, one by Gerard Manley Hopkins. Harrower is the master (mistress?) of suggestion: often conveying the emotional impact of human interactions, rather than the interactions themselves in a way that, initially, creates a sense of mystery and, later, simply admiration for her technique.

At times deliciously vicious; at times, brutal and sad, these stories are well worth reading individually or one after the other. I can see why the collection made the 2016 StellaPrize shortlist. Highly recommended.
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Reading Progress

January 5, 2017 – Started Reading
January 7, 2017 – Shelved
January 8, 2017 – Finished Reading

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