Stone in a Landslide by Maria Barbal

bookshelves: cover-love, paper-read, tbr-busting-2015, published-1984, spain, spring-2015, shortstory-shortstories-novellas

Read from September 18, 2014 to April 12, 2015

“I feel like a stone in a landslide. If someone or something disturbs it, I’ll come tumbling down with the others. If nothing comes near I’ll be here, still, for days and days…”

Description: Loss, love, life, guilt, hate, history, war and death. This little book covers it all, including an entire century and a complete life. When I finished reading it I felt as if there was nothing more to say.

Admittedly, on the surface it sounds like any old country side story. The Catalan Pyrenees at the beginning of the last century: 13-year-old Conxa is sent to live and work for her childless aunt in another village. Years of hard work follow. Eventually she finds love and happiness with Jaume. But the civil war causes havoc and Conxa moves to Barcelona. It is here that she, now an old woman, sits down to tell us her story.

Opening: Anyone could see there were a lot of us at home. Someone had to go.

Whilst all the covers are simply beautiful, not all the stories have held appeal, yet this one is a perfect little bundle, a bit like Conxa herself when in the company of Juame:

But Juame told me that saying my name was like eating a sweet, that it was the name of something small and delicious that he liked very much. It was if he’d been born to take away my fears, to bring light where I saw darkness and to flatten what felt like mountains to me.

    Why do hundreds of stones
always fall at once?

Peirene Press:

4* Stone in a Landslide
4* The Brothers
WL Beside the Sea
4* The Murder of Halland
4* Next World Novella
1* Portrait of the Mother as a Young Woman
1* The Blue Room


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