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Frances Itani

Ottawa, Oberon Press, 1989. 93pp, paper, ISBN 0-88750-7549 (cloth) $25.95, 0-88750-755-7 (paper) $12.95.

Reviewed by Esther Hutchison.

Volume 17 Number 5
1989 September

This is a collection of seven short stories, most of which have previously appeared elsewhere. Two of the stories deal with the illness and death of a sister, but there is no obvious con­nection between the others. However, the theme of all the stories is an examination of the ways in which women live their lives and deal with death. Although most of the stories are in the first person and there is a certain consistency of vision, the protagonists are not the same character throughout.

The feminine vision is subtle and accurate, whether describing the last day of an elderly Japanese woman or the isolated life of a professor on a teaching exchange in Germany. The two most moving stories deal with two sisters as one of them faces death in hospital and the other deals with her helplessness and her memories.

The author has previously published a children's book and several collec­tions of poetry. This is her first collection of short stories.

This is a worthwhile addition to the short story collection.

Esther Hutchison, Spruce Grove, Alta.
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