The Traveling Woman

Roberta Allen, Author Vehicle Editions $12 (128p) ISBN 978-0-931428-14-2
Allen is an artist whose work has been widely exhibited. Here she turns to prose for the first time, and the result is a collection of bleak short stories, none longer than two pages, that act as snapshots of an American woman abroad. (The stories appear to be highly autobiographical: the protagonist in most of the narratives is an American artist who is unhappily married for a time to a German and is attracted to a married Dutch doctor.) The themes are predominantly of love betrayed, rejected, or otherwise gone wrong between a man and a woman. Unfortunately, Allen prefers to describe rather than evoke, as in a sentence that reads: ""She feels a lightning-like stab; an old wound splits open, and the pain sinks so deep she staggers.'' The black-and-white drawings reflect the starkness of the prose. (March)
Reviewed on: 04/01/1986
Release date: 04/01/1986
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