This 1000+ page book weighs in at several pounds and contains novel excerpts and short stories written by Irish authors from Jonathan Swift (1667-1745) and Laurence Sterne (1713-1768) all the way up to Colum McCann and Emma Donoghue. An introduction by Toibin is also included.
While catching up on blog reading over the weekend, I was intrigued by this review of Yesterday's Weather: Stories by Anne Enright found at Books in the City. I've been meaning to read Enright, and quickly chose her story as a starting point in the massive collection!
"Cathy was often wrong, she found it more interesting. She was wrong about the taste of bananas. She was wrong about the future of the bob. She was wrong about where her life ended up. She loved corners, surprise, changes of light."
Cathy leads a rather conventional life, married to a 'safe' man, working behind a handbag counter in Dublin.
"Quietly, one customer after another was guided to the inevitable and surprising choice of a bag that was not 'them' but one step beyond who they thought they might be.Cathy knew what handbags were for. She herself carried everything (which wasn't much) in one pocket, or the other."
One day Cathy unexpectedly fall in love with a female customer. She is confused, and her life begins to come apart as she yearns for feelings (and things) she's never owned. At the conclusion of this slightly sad story, Cathy possibly suffers a breakdown, taking out her pain on a brown leather handbag. I could not find a link to this story (it is included in Yesterday's Weather), but did learn that it has been made into a short film.
Anne Enright was born in 1962 and is most well-known for her novel The Gathering, winner of the 2007 Man Booker Prize. Short Story Monday is hosted by John Mutford at The Book Mine Set.