Sweet Home

Wendy Erskine

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27 June 2019
9781529017069
224 pages
Synopsis

LONGLISTED FOR THE GORDON BURN PRIZE 2019

‘Wendy Erskine’s first collection, Sweet Home . . . is every bit as good as her early stories in the always astute Stinging Fly magazine promised.’ Jon McGregor, New Statesman

Set in the author’s native Belfast, the ten stories in Sweet Home lay bare the heartbreak and quiet tragedies that run under the surface of everyday lives. A lonely woman is fascinated by her niqab-wearing
neighbours; a middle-aged teacher becomes obsessed with a young Gaelic football player; and an employer covers for his two employees caught having sex in a public toilet.

Wendy Erskine offers perfectly formed, brilliantly observed portraits of people trying to carve out a life for themselves, all the while being buffeted by the loss, grief and regret that come their way. Warm, compassionate and funny, Sweet Home captures life in contemporary East Belfast, in all of its forms.

With skill and style, Erskine unpicks the underlying complexity of ordinary lives, the unexpected intricacy of ordinary situations. These are stories about ramification as opposed to redemption; dark, bittersweet and perfectly formed.

Sara Baume

A collection of deft, depth-charged short stories.

Paul Muldoon - TLS

Wendy Erskine's first collection, Sweet Home . . . is every bit as good as her early stories in the always astute Stinging Fly magazine promised.

Jon McGregor - New Statesman