Snow in May (Paperback)Kseniya Melnik (author)
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SHORTLISTED FOR THE DYLAN THOMAS PRIZE
The stories of Kseniya Melnik's debut collection are small-town miracles, each a miniature epic.
Their focus is Magadan, a town in the Northern Far East of Russia, and the unvisited lives of its inhabitants and emigrants - schoolchildren, doctors, teachers, mothers, daughters. Some characters span several stories. Some of their stories span decades and continents. The measure of their telling, though, is invariably the measure of everyday existence. Their dramas, too, are made of quotidian stuff, each life with its own sly or suppressed tragedies, and its brief, often unexpected ecstasies.
Kseniya Melnik's sensibility is sober and humorous; her stories are moving and funny. In their patient, deliberate unfolding - at once surprising and convincing - and in the fitness of their details - vital because they are suggestive - we sense, above all, an assurance that is dazzling.
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Number of pages: 288
Weight: 200 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 18 mm
'She's inherited her native country's literary giants' passion for soul-searching and dramatizing the shared fates that bind people to places.' Max Liu, Independent
'Melnik is very talented, and this is an unerringly assured and dextrous first book. It's a big compliment when I say it merits comparison to Jennifer Egan's wonderful 'A Visit from the Goon Squad' - the way perspectives prismatically glide from character to character and era to era, showing the simultaneously redemptive and remorseless work of Time in lucid and elaborate cross-section. Needless to say, though each story works on its own, they build beautifully together.
The writing itself is achieved, finished, and gleams with unexpected imagery, gorgeous idiomatic reconfigurations of cliches and memorable aphorisms.' Colin Barrett, author of 'Young Skins'
'Funny and sad, tender and tough, Melnik's stories reveal a writer who is wise and insightful beyond her years. Melnik's grasp of the realities of the twentieth century Russian Far East is startlingly accurate, but these stories are not anthropological studies - the characters transcend the setting, and they will break your heart.' Anya Ulinich, author of 'Petropolis'
'The best story collection you'll read this year.' Darin Strauss, bestselling author of 'Chang and Eng', 'More Than It Hurts You' and 'Half a Life'
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“Delicate, ethereal capsules”
Magadan is a strange place, on the edge of the world with a dark history. This is a truly unique collection of stories that act as little vignettes into a world so unlike our own. The characters are odd and brilliant... More
Snow In May is the current read for ShelterBox Book Club, and my first since signing up. Unfortunately, as you can tell by the solitary star, I really did not enjoy this book!
I’m not a big fan of short stories so... More
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