By: Maggie Gee
The actors in these short stories quietly and unobtrusively assume their place in the world. An older woman rids herself of social shackles in the hypnotic title story as she moves towards the sea and freedom, a man packs in his day job to sell miniature suitcases, while a woman converts a freelance evangelist after their plane nearly crashes. Maggie Gee deftly encapsulates a world in which a moment of impatience with a spouse can cost a family their lives and a dying man's last thoughts are of gathering his wife's favourite flowers in a bouquet. Her characters are all too familiar in their struggle for fulfilment and their efforts to come to grips with bittersweet, but enduring love. These exquisite stories of everyday life are set against an intricately woven backdrop encompassing larger issues of poverty, race relations, and social prejudices. They are stories about love that tell us something about life, and how people negotiate a path for themselves.