Fool's Bells

Lynette D'Anna, Author, Lynnette D'Anna, Author Insomniac Press $15.99 (176p) ISBN 978-1-895837-90-2
In this final book in her trilogy, employing simple and stunningly lovely prose to illuminate the frightening worlds she describes, D'anna (Sing Me No More; RagTimeBone) weaves from the lives of three women an intricate and poetic, if sometimes overwrought, tale. The separate stories of Sra, Baby and Naomi take shape in chapters mirroring the four elements: water, fire, earth, air. Sra and her best friend, Imp, are young girls growing up in the small Canadian town of Stonybrook, until Imp, helpless against her father's sexual abuse, hangs herself. Overcome with confusion and grief, Sra retreats into a world filled with imaginary guides: Albino, Creature, Drummer and the Fool. Eventually, she leaves home in search of Truth. Sra's story anchors the narrative as she journeys from na vet to womanhood, and eventually, back to her native town. Baby, meanwhile, is a teenage prostitute whose mother (also a prostitute) never named her and sold her for drug money. Now Mother is moribund, and Baby is forced to take care of her, in between gigs with a variety of unusual clients. Naomi is the daughter of a one-eyed man who began to rape her when she was 12, after her mother died. She's also married to violent Jeff, who suspects but can't confront her wife about her ongoing incestuous relationship with her father. To her credit, D'anna manages to describe such devastating events as incest and sexual and physical abuse with language that is clear as a fool's bell. Fearlessly honest, this novel is a paradox, using exquisite prose to tackle horrifying issues. (May)
Reviewed on: 09/27/1999
Release date: 09/01/1999
Ebook - 152 pages - 978-1-897415-98-6
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