Wednesday, February 02, 2022

Short Story Wednesday: THE INVISIBLE DAUGHTER, Anca Vlasopolos


I just got this collection from Amazon and have only read the first four stories but had to include it today. I have known Anca for 25 years and have been amazed at her poetry, her incredible memoir (NO RETURN ADDRESS) and her novel (THE NEW BEDFORD SAMURAI). She was in my writing group for a decade so I got to hear her read many of these endeavors on their way to publication. About eight years ago, she and her husband, Anthony, moved to Cape Cod and although I have not lost touch with them, I have lost touch with her writing. And now this fine collection.

Because Anca has had an unusual life (escaping from Romania with her mother during the Cold War, watching her Greek father die as a result of his politics, adopting a daughter from Guatemala, her years as a professor of English and union official, a potter,  knowing more about plants and birds than almost anyone I know, she has a deep knowledge base to draw from. And the first four stories certainly put that on display. 

I will talk about them more when I finish the collection but bravo, Anca.


Kevin Tipple 

Jerry House 


George Kelley 

Todd Mason


Margot Kinberg said...

I love that you have that personal connection with her, Patti. I think that always adds richness to a story. I'm glad you shared some of her work.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Thanks, Margot!

Jeff Meyerson said...

Sounds very good. Over the years I've seen a few friends - most notably Bill Crider, of course - get their start in publishing and a successful career as a writer. It's always good.

I finished the Laura Lippman book (SEASONAL WORK), which I enjoyed. "Waco 1982" was a story I'd read before, about a young reporter working in North Texas in 1982, much as Lippman herself was.

I've gone back to the collection of Edward D. Hoch's non-series stories from the 1960s, THE NIGHT MY FRIEND. As a general rule, I much prefer his series stories. Yesterday's story, "Day for a Picnic" (The Saint, 1963) (another reread) could easily have fit into the Dr. Sam Hawthorne series of historical "impossible" crimes. It's set at a small town picnic in the mid-1930s. Our narrator was a 10 year old boy then, staying with his grandfather while his parents toured Europe. At the picnic, an aspiring politician takes a drink of beer from a pitcher that has been passed from person to person, yet he and he alone is poisoned, dead. The solution is as clever as you'd expect from Hoch, a master of the form.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I am reading the Lippman book too and impressed as always.

Todd Mason said...

Everything sounds impressive here, indeed! I fell asleep before I could write my Wed reviews last night, but am doing so now. Also, atypically, new work, if from friendly acquaintances rather than old friends. Link anon. (And brava, indeed...sounds like a lot has been overcome with elan and good work, even aside from the literary work.)

Todd Mason said...

Here's mine, as in progress as everything I do these days.

Todd Mason said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Todd Mason said...

Amusingly, the Elizabeth Hand story in the Datlow Shirley Jackson tribute volume is in some ways a more elaborated, age-adjusted variation on the theme of Joanna Russ's "Come Closer"...even as the Russ is a child of no few fairy tales.

TracyK said...

Anca sounds like a very interesting person. I look forward to hearing more about the stories.