Two publications from Chaffinch Press (a Blue Nib imprint), a short story collection from a prize-winning author and an novel that was shortlisted in the Cinnamon Press Novel Award.
“Trouble Crossing the Bridge” Diana Powell
The characters in these fifteen stories, while separated by time, place, age and gender, are brought together in this collection, making it a melting-pot of personality, voice, setting and plot. All the characters have been damaged by life in some way – whether by their own psychological problems or by external circumstances such as possessive mothers or abusive fathers. The various ways in which they rise up to meet their particular challenges lies at the heart of all their stories. And they are as diverse as the individuals themselves.
Diana Powell was born and brought up in Llanelli, South Wales. She is the winner of the ChipLit Festival prize, the Allen Raine award, and the 2014, PENfro prize.
“Girl” Maria Straw-Çinar
‘Girl’ was shortlisted in the Cinnamon Press Novel Award and concerns Mannis, who is a girl; an amnesiac, an anti-hero, a revelatory, who experiences a warped fairy-tale world in which she becomes the vigilante Queen. Girl takes us on a journey through surreal landscapes in a series of dreamlike flashbacks to Ireland, France, Spain, Oman, Morocco and The Empty Quarter. Mannis kills three men in revenge attacks and cuts out their hearts. She travels South and buys three jewelled caskets in Fez. One for each heart. She lives in isolation as a voluntary mute in the Sahara. It is from here that she begins to recall events that ultimately lead to her transformation. Finally, she finds the sacred ground where she can bury her hearts, perform her alchemy and build a shrine to the future. Managing to change her identity and avoid capture, she wanders for years, searching for her lost child. Celtic mythology, alchemy and poetry collide in this tale of lost innocence and a girl’s struggle for freedom from violent desires and bloody colonialism.
‘I think this is an amazing piece of work. The language is voluptuous, sinuous, rich in colour and delicious play of and on words… an astonishing virtuoso symphonic stream. The passion of it is head-on and the pain and sensuality in startling measure and degree. I revelled.’ Graeme Fife, Writer
‘Mythic, magical and poetic, Girl takes us on an extraordinary journey through loss and transformation. At once an oneiric coming of age novel and an exploration of the violence of sexism and colonialism, Girl is an intense and unique read.’ Jan Fortune, Author and Editor at Cinnamon Press.
Available from http://www.chaffinchpress.com
Emma Lee’s The Significance of a Dress is available from Arachne Press. The link also has a trailer featuring the title poems and samples of some of the poems from the collection.