Mending: New and Selected Stories

Sallie Bingham, Author
Sallie Bingham. Sarabande (Consortium, dist.), $22.95 (248p) ISBN 978-1-936747-00-9 $16.95 trade paper ISBN 978-1-936747-01-6
Reviewed on: 08/15/2011
Release date: 09/01/2011
Ebook - 288 pages - 978-1-936747-33-7
Paperback - 260 pages - 978-1-936747-01-6
Open Ebook - 274 pages - 978-1-281-74745-7
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Spanning 50 years, this omnibus of Bingham’s tight, sparkling short fiction includes stories from her earliest collection, The Touching Hand (1967), to her latest, Red Car (2008). The title story that opens the collection demonstrates the attention to detail and skillfully rendered emotional tension that characterize Bingham’s work. “My trade is doctors,” the story’s anxious young heroine declares as she visits one after the other. Believing herself deficient in feeling, she becomes smitten with her tired, green-eyed psychiatrist, “who seemed to have spent himself warming people up.” Though he won’t have her as a lover, she recognizes that his therapeutic acceptance of her scabby need is a kind of love. In “Found,” set five years after the end of WWII, the privileged daughter of the U.S. ambassador to France comes to understand society’s miseries while living in a Paris full of scarred, hostile survivors. In the disquieting “Anywhere You Send Me,” the values of a wealthy, older woman clash with the unimaginable destitution of the motley band of Haitian refugees that she shelters on her Southern farm. Bingham’s work, including favorites such as “The Wedding” and “Sweet Peas,” remains sharp and deliciously unsettling, ripe for discovery by a new generation of readers. (Oct.)
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