A short collection made up of nine first-person stories that combine vivid realism with dream sequences and Moroccan darja (dialect) with Virginia Woolf quotes. The narrators, almost always women, move deftly between their memories, their dreams, and the present moment, creating rich internal and external worlds populated by colourful characters and intense emotions.
From the memory of clandestine visits to a banished aunt, the conjuring of a long-lost friend in a dream, and the musings of a woman facing a fatal diagnosis, to a desperate search for a deceased father and the protective love of a child for her guilt-ridden brother who believes he has taken a life, these tales offer explorations of loss, rebellion, redemption and regret. Love-hate relationships with problematic fathers form a recurring theme, driving one narrator to bitterness and self-pity and another to forgiveness. Reflections on ageing, death and loneliness merge with experiences that foreground desire and celebrate connection.
Baqa’s style – introspective voices and prose peppered with ellipses and parentheses – brings to life complex, interestingly unreliable narrators. The result is a kaleidoscope of female perspectives.
Approximate number of pages: 92 p.
Foreign rights: contact the publisher