Being a Canadian woman writer of European descent, I came into Fauzia Rafique’s The Adventures of SahebaN without background knowledge of the role (Mirza) Sahiba plays in much of traditional Punjabi culture. The beauty of Rafique’s text however, is how my lack does not impact my understanding of how the narrative turns a cultural model for perfection (Sahiba) on her head to showcase the flaws of that very perfection, and (in particular) to show that a woman can be honourable, and pure, and loyal, without bowing to the restrictive ideas and expectations that society and religion place upon her.
A while back I had the honour of having both a short story and a small book review published in the inaugural issue of The Bolo Tie Collective’s annual anthology. While the short story casts a dark shadow on Edmonton’s 104th Avenue, the book review below takes a lighter approach to local author Liam Leroux’s short publication, Ostrich MgQuarck is the Worst Detective in the World.
This review is a personal perspective on Tracey Lindberg’s Birdie, and outlines my own impressions regarding this narrative. There are no spoilers, so if you haven’t read it yet, don’t worry! If you have, I would love to hear your own reflections in the comments below!
Weaving many flash-fiction works into a single, bound narrative, Paulo Da Costa’s The Midwife of Torment paints humanity in its honest bright colours and oscillating emotions of anger, anguish, terror, and curiosity. Between the pages of these sudden fictions lies the nuance of our everyday existence, filtered through Da Costa’s own internal struggle concerning his simultaneous anger and affection for modern humanity.