When we read a good book, we escape the minutia of our daily lives, entering a world where we dwell as sweetly haunted, willfull, temporary inhabitants. When we read a great book, we find a road in the sky, a road paved partly of prose that fuse nature with a literary tension that quivers our souls like miniature symphony concert halls.
“The cold war had begun. It invaded all the spaces of the house. It was in the mathematical clinking of cutlery at the dining table, in the aloofness of the familiar room, in the silence of the night, and in the humdrum of daylight.” Notice how this sentence by Kanwar in her short story Two Pigeons, does not just describe the world, but marries human emotion with reality. That’s what great books do.
But this collection of Kanwar’s short stories do far more than deliver deeply talented literary prose, including poignant similies, wistful description, and interesting plots, they also paint roads in the sky via love stories in which the culture of her maiden country sings out with operatic passing scenery as the reader flies away to many different stories of ordinary people who find their true romantic destinies. Each story speaks to the human condition, the longing, the excited misery, and the delicious twists of fate that every love story holds in its bosom. She captures the beautiful and sometimes fleeting yet unforgettable essence of love each and every time.
I look forward to watching this poet’s storytelling skills evolve, one day into perhaps even a full novel. And I will buy future books and relish them and, most of all, hope to find not just literature to escape into, but that which creates, for both me and other readers, more roads in the sky.
Yours in literature,
Upcoming reviews: Soul and Shadow by Sue McLeod, Sweet Karoline by Cathy Astolfo, and The Corporeal Pull by Sara B. Gauldin