Cannibals in Sicily and the Bathing Huts

Monique Lange, Author Marion Boyars Publishers $18.95 (186p) ISBN 978-0-7145-2879-3
Both of these fragile novellas cast a woman's crisis in feminist perspective. In each, the woman takes a therapeutic holiday in a foreign or touristic spot, where the local gaiety contrasts with her inner state and emphasizes her alienation. In ``Cannibals in Sicily,'' Sara grieves obsessively over her mother's recent death. Observed through the eyes of her narrator husband, a device that distances readers, Sara is reminded of her loss by the places they visit (e.g., the catacombs). But the sights also serve as way stations on Sara's journey toward reconciliation and wholeness. ``The Bathing Huts,'' a more satisfying tale, traces the growth of a nameless ``young woman''a grandmother of 50during a sojourn in Brittany. Bruised by her husband's homosexual affairs, the woman, a writer, learns to relish her ``hidden life'' by the sea, where she hopes to invest her new work with love. When a charming old blue-eyed sailor offers her his bathing beach hut, she makes it her home and falls in love with the owner. The brief adventure reaffirms her womanliness and her art. Popular French novelist Lange is also a biographer of Edith Piaf and a screenwriter. (September)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1988
Release date: 01/01/1988
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