I believe that story collections are the hardest to review. But this collection makes it easy.
When I started this book, I put something on Twitter, and the author responded that HAD was his favorite in the collection. And while that was very good, my favorite was Somebody’s Always Saying Goodbye. While the main character is Steven, I felt like Dora really carried the emotion of the piece. I could “see” and hear the voices of her and Steven better than any of the other characters. The message she delivers of “You want to live?” “Then you live,” is one I have heard for many years from this corner of the population. Maybe these two characters were just more familiar to me, but they are definitely ones I will be thinking about for a while.
Usually, in these collections, there is at least one story that the reader cannot connect to. I did not have that happen in this book.
This is the perfect summer read – story by story on the beach or your living room in the air conditioning, you will be thoroughly entertained.
In this debut collection of stories, Zev Good takes the reader into a world he knows and illuminates so well: the middle-class American South. In the opening story, “The Sweet By-and-By,” an inexplicable tragedy brings to light the cracks in a family’s foundation. In “Had,” a man recalls his youth and must, at last, come to terms with the one love he could never have. The title story alternates between the present and the past, and tells us a truth we all know but find hard to admit: that to rescue ourselves, we sometimes have to leave others behind.These stories, populated with mothers and children, friends and lovers, the living and the dying, reveal the intricate and tenuous bonds that unite us all.