Originally published on Wales Arts Review:
Short stories more often than not present the reader with snapshots of a larger life. Rather than depicting the whole story, they capture moments, while demonstrating the writer’s ability to use language skilfully and economically. Chrissie Gittins’ semi-autobiographical short story collection does just that. Written over the course of two decades, the 22 interlinked short stories follow the author as she navigates through the different stages in her life. Many of the stories have also been published in The Guardian, Ink Sweat and Tears, The Lampeter Review, and Wales Arts Review.
The collection explores the universal themes of family, relationships, and the roles that each of us take on during our lives. From childhood to awkward teenage years, first relationships, moving away from the parental house and returning to it to take care of ageing parents, the stories pack a lot in them.