What do we think we desire? What do we truly desire? These are the two competing forces underlying Xu Xi’s latest fiction collection Access. These thirteen tales are at once acerbic and heartbreaking, directing our gaze at the incongruities of human relations and the persistence of wounds our hearts cannot heal. Those in the multi culti world of these fictions seek answers to questions they have yet to learn to ask. But every so often they glimpse an entry point, and these sightings offer reason to hope, even if access will again be denied, as it inevitably is, for those whose desires strain towards perfection in our highly imperfect world.
|Publisher:||Signal 10 Media Inc|
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.46(d)|
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The thirteen tales in this little book are connected by a single theme: desire. Not necessarily sexual desire but desire none-the-less. The author has broken her stories into five categories: tall tales; circular tales; fairy tales; old wives' tales and beastly tales. The separation is nice because if you find one category isn't to your liking, the stories change form in the next category. Probably the hardest thing about reviewing collections is that there are some stories that really appeal to me - 'Access' in the fairy tales department - and others that are really not my cup of tea - 'Iron Light' in the tall tales department. In this collection, I found the balance about 60/40 in favour of the stories I liked. All of the stories are very well written and remain true to the theme, which I appreciated. It was easier to move from story to story because of that thread. Many of the stories made me think and some just entertained. I didn't find that I seriously hated any of the stories although I felt a little let down by a few. I would say that is the way many collections hit me. I'm sure someone else could read Xu Xi's stories and enjoy some that I didn't while disliking some that I enjoyed. One of the things I loved about this short story collection is that each story introduced me to new and varied characters in a variety of situations. There were no two stories the same. If I'm going to read a collection like this, I don't want to be re-reading the same basic story over and over. This is definitely another good purse book.