Book: The Garden Party and Other Stories, by Katherine Mansfield
Genre: Short stories
Where I got it: The Open Door (secondhand bookshop)
Briefly, it’s a collection of short stories which do not revolve around plot. Each one is more like a portrait, which draws the reader in by understatement and intimation. Mansfield “concentrate(s) on one moment, a crisis or a turning point, rather than on a sequence of events” (Goodreads author page). This is the opposite of “in your face” writing – it is delicate, profound, and most definitely calls for a second reading. The eight short pages of “The Lady’s Maid”, the last story in this collection, have painted a picture in my mind to which I will return many times.
Anything else: I hadn’t read anything by Katherine Mansfield since school, when one of her stories was on the English curriculum. (I think it was “The Fly”, which is not in this book). I didn’t know that she was born and grew up in New Zealand, I thought she was English.