They call them the Harmony mines, these shafts plunged deep into Virginia’s earth. Nothing harmonious about the way they forced her to yield her treasure then hurried from the devastation and disarray, leaving her plundered, gaping, with only a spiteful wind to witness the outrage, sauntering, probing the evidence of her ruin: a water bottle, a single boot, the brittle bits of plastic men leave in their wake. Among the […]

Categories: BLOG: On my mind

‘If I ever lose my mind, just push me off a cliff; I’d hate to be a burden.’ That’s what my mother used to say when she was still effortlessly managing a job and a home; cooking Sunday lunch for the extended family; engaging in political debate and devouring books that spanned topics from mystery to mysticism. I can see her, perched on a kitchen stool in her satiny nightdress, […]

Categories: Featured, Mental health

Anne Tyler’s novels are always satisfying. She’s a great storyteller, a master of dialogue and she has a reputation for crafting vivid, believable characters. Ladder of Years (Random House) ticks all these boxes, and yet her flawed protagonist (that’s what makes her believable) is a little too flawed to be endearing. Delia Grinstead, 40, wife of Dr Sam Grinstead and mother of three children, feels insignificant in her family. The […]

Categories: On my shelf

A woman with only a cat for company has no time to be lonely. A woman with a cat is a woman in training. Eva came to me as all cats do; in response to a psychic call. A home had been found for her kittens but not for her, so, identifying with her status as a rootless single woman with some living under her belt, I invited her in. […]

Categories: Columns, Featured
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