Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Smoked Meat ~ Rowena Macdonald

This collection has been described as, 'Deliciously erotic and hugely readable, with some wonderful moments of illumination.' Smoked Meat is set in Montreal and Macdonald takes the reader on a journey through the seedier side of the city, exploring the interlinked relationships and secrets of those who live there. The first story, 'Brian, McMurphy & Sally Too' tells the story of long time friends Brian and McMurphy who grew up in Gimli, 'a deadbeat town on the outskirts of Winnipeg where the biggest thrills were shooting up horse tranquilisers and playing chicken on the railroad track.' Their friendship is jeopardised when McMurphy falls in love with irritating life model, Sally. The reader recognises familiar characters as they continue to crop up in a variety of stories; 'Down to 'Rue Beaudry' tells the story of Henry who is unfaithful to his girlfriend with a man he meets in a sauna. The story is followed by 'Slow Burn' which offers neighbour child Esme's perspective on Henry's infidelity, and Henry's girlfriend Corinna's story is further explored in 'Double Take.' The exploration of character from differing viewpoints gives Macdonald's collection a real sense of place and community.

Read an interview with Rowena Macdonald here.
Read a review of Smoked Meat here.

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