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In her latest collection of stories, Janice Galloway turns her unflinching gaze on relationships: the struggle to love against the odds, the overpowering yearning to communicate, and the extraordinary epiphanies where the World falls away leaving only the lovers. Love is, of course, where you find it, and it is here in an evening walk across a London bridge, a chip-shop pizza, Derek's mouth, or ham sandwiches cut into hearts. A brilliant observer of human frailty and tenderness, Janice Galloway examines the moments where lives split like a stone, where people are healed or broken by a word or the touch of a hand. Savagely accurate, vivid and unsentimental, these are painstakingly crafted stories: engaging, caustic, funny and terrifyingly true.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780099453116
ISBN-10: 0099453118
Format: Paperback
(198mm x 129mm x 14mm)
Pages: 240
Imprint: Vintage
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publish Date: 1-May-1997
Country of Publication: United Kingdom


US Kirkus Review » Twenty stories, some mere fragments, describe with clinical detachment the gnawing disappointments and blighted realities of most loves. Award-winning Scottish writer Galloway ("Foreign Parts", 1994, etc.) is a cheerless chronicler of those whose lives, even without heartbreak, are lived on the margins, with dreary and ill-paid jobs. The title story's narrator is a prostitute whose pimp makes her feel special because he says her "kisses are what I'm for." In "Valentine," a young woman, despite flowers, a gift, and dinner, finds herself, at the end of the day, with her "heart bursting with wanting to give more" in order to connect somehow with her unimaginative boyfriend. In "Proposal," a young woman is afraid of losing her independence (" I want you to stop making decisions for me") if she agrees to marry her boyfriend. As the two drive to his parents' house and have lunch with them, he irritates her further by revealing more decisions he's made without consulting her. Other perils of love are detailed in "In Test," about an impoverished middle-aged artist, in London to visit galleries, who thinks about her life and lover as she tries to pluck up courage to buy a pregnancy-testing kit. She concludes that she'll survive whatever the outcome: "People did. They had the capacity to survive." In "Sonata Form," a famous and self-absorbed musician's wife is tired of dealing with her husband's fans and the demands of his career but realizes, after a concert, how much she loves and admires him. And in "Bisex," a young lesbian fights her desire to telephone the bisexual woman she loves, as she imagines what the woman is doing with men . . . "I wonder and try not to think, thinking anyway." Accomplished, yet emotionally arid writing: cold comfort for those who believe love conquers all. (Kirkus Reviews)

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Author Biography - Janice Galloway

Janice Galloway was born in Ayrshire. Her first novel, The Trick is to Keep Breathing, was published in 1990 and won the MIND/Allen Lane Book of the Year and was shortlisted for the Whitbread First Novel and Scottish First Book. The stage version has been performed at the Tron Theatre, Glasgow, the Harbourfront Festival, Toronto, and the Royal Court in London. her second book, Blood, a collection of stories, was published in 1992. A story from that collection won the Cosmopolitan/Perrier Short Story Award. Her second novel, Foreign Parts, won the 1994 McVitie's Prize. In 1994 she also won the E.M. Forster Award, presented by the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She lives in Glasgow.

Books By Author Janice Galloway

Trick is to Keep Breathing by Janice Galloway

The Trick is to Keep Breathing

Paperback, August 2015
Jellyfish by Janice Galloway


Hardback, June 2015
All Made Up by Janice Galloway

All Made Up

Paperback, July 2012
Complete Short Stories by Janice Galloway

The Complete Short Stories

Paperback, August 2011