Cohen has crafted each story as a complete narrative, drawing on her experience as a dancer to add elements of theatricality and often centering the experiences of women who demand more than life readily offers them. Many of the stories also feature Jewish characters drawn with sympathy and humor. The plotting throughout is clear and concise, holding the reader’s attention. Some conclusions feel a little precipitous, as in “The Free Spirit,” but this doesn’t detract from the overall quality of the writing.
The character development is thorough and introspective, providing each character with a backstory sufficient to explain their motivation. In few words, Cohen draws her protagonists believably and realistically explores everyday events, such as Jane’s drug-induced haze in “The High Road” and Joe’s frustrations with debit card fraud in “Card on the Loose.” It’s a pleasure to read along as these characters trust their intuitions and seek their joy.
Takeaway: Any fan of short literary fiction will appreciate Cohen’s collection of thought-provoking, richly drawn narratives.
Great for fans of Alice Munro’s Runaway, Lauren Groff’s Florida.
Design and typography: A-
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"Some of these stories took me back to the 60's, a time I remember with fondness. Each story was uniquely entertaining. Great writing!"