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The scent of cinnamon & other stories - Charles Lambert

9781844717392
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Title
The scent of cinnamon & other stories
Author
Charles Lambert
format
Paperback / softback
Publisher
Salt
Language
English
UK Publication Date
20100318

These prize-winning stories deal with life, love, loneliness, delusion, misunderstanding, death. An office worker wakes to find his body invaded by a mysterious parasite. A desperate woman seeks escape through fire. A girl who knows only the forest is taken to the city for the first time. A solitary young boy conjures a girl from leaves to replace his twin sister. In one story a governess is forced to come to terms with the truth of the family she has loved and served, and the world in which she lives. In another, a one-night stand with a sadist triggers a meditation on sexual pleasure and serial killers. Some characters look for work, for ways to change their lives, for somewhere new to live; others for someone to love or be loved by, or to hurt. Not everyone is good. Not everyone is honest with himself or herself. Not everyone gets what they want, or deserve. The stories' settings range across time and space, from the colonial outback in the late nineteenth century to contemporary urban life in London and Rome and Paris, to both warring sides of the Second World War. The tone is comic, dry, satirical, vivid, magical, disturbing, poignant, spare. Not a word is wasted in these stories, which describe the world not only as it is and was, but also as it might be.

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Charles Lambert was born in Lichfield, the United Kingdom, in 1953. After going to eight different schools in the Midlands and Derbyshire, he won a scholarship to the University of Cambridge from 1972 to 1975. In 1976 he moved to Milan and, with brief interruptions in Ireland, Portugal and London, has lived and worked in Italy since then. Currently a university teacher, academic translator and freelance editor for international agencies, he now lives in Fondi, exactly halfway between Rome and Naples.

For Little Monsters: Beautifully written and crafted, and more compelling than many thrillers.


Daily Mail - John Harding

For Little Monsters: When I was thirteen, my father killed my mother' is an opening line that could go one of two ways. Thankfully, it pans out into a haunting novel, not a turgid misery. This is the story of a young girl ripped apart by grief, shunted off to an uncaring relative and, finally, finding the stability she craves in her Uncle Joey. But the chance to upset the equilibrium of human relationships is only ever a breath away.


Good Housekeeping

This volume contains the best story I have read in several years, although the prize jury felt otherwise: Charles Lambert's "The Scent of Cinnamon". While other stories in the anthology push the creative boundaries of the short story form, Lambert's story is a classic short story in the O. Henry mould, complete with a surprise revealed at the end that adds a whole new dimension to what you have just read. The story is not one word longer than it should be, and every word is meaningful and well-chosen. The portrayal of longing amidst isolation is powerfully moving. This story is a work of art which should be taught in schools as a model of the form.


Amazon.com

"The Scent of Cinnamon," a love story of heart-rending proportions, is written in a language that is simple and readable, yet one that rides on the undercurrent of the classics, and in most parts, modern-day magical realism. Intimate situations are probably the hardest to depict. In this beautiful story, Lambert proves himself a master.


Manila Standard Today

Talented Charles Lambert presents "The Scent of Cinnamon," a memorable and haunting tale of an arranged marriage between a widow and a farmer. It's the kind of story you have to read twice, for the ending is so surprising - and so good - that rereading is the only way to make sense of it all.


Oakland Tribune

Type
BOOK
Edition
Pbk Edition
Country of Publication
England
Number of Pages
293

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