‘Go into yourself. Search for the reason that bids you to write… describe your sorrows and desires, passing thoughts and a belief in some sort of beauty.’
Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet: Letter One
Jamie O’Connell’s debut collection of short stories, Some Sort of Beauty, distils the experiences, memories, regrets and hopes of a miscellany of 21st-century private worlds. The collection explores issues of faith, sexuality, travel and modern urban culture, through voices as diverse as that of a Jehovah’s Witness father coping with the death of his rebel daughter, the monologue of a woman who abandoned her young family, drug-fuelled reminiscences and stark reflections on love and the quiet tragedy of everyday moments. Underlining these narratives is a powerful humanity guided by hope, forgiveness and the redemptive power of art.
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