From prize-winning short-story writer Cate Kennedy comes a new collection to rival her highly acclaimed Dark Roots. In Like a House on Fire, Kennedy once again takes ordinary lives and dissects their ironies, injustices and pleasures with her humane eye and wry sense of humour. In ‘Laminex and Mirrors’, a young woman working as a cleaner in a hospital helps an elderly patient defy doctor’s orders. In ‘Cross-Country’, a jilted lover manages to misinterpret her ex’s new life. And in ‘Ashes’, a son accompanies his mother on a journey to scatter his father’s remains, while lifelong resentments simmer in the background. Cate Kennedy’s poignant short stories find the beauty and tragedy in illness and mortality, life and love.
'This is a heartfelt and moving collection of short stories that cuts right to the emotional centre of everyday life.'
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'Short fiction at its best.'
'Cate Kennedy's anger is a cleansing fire. Her stories ache with small mercies — tender, life-affirming, real.'
'One of the world's finest short-story writers'.
'Cate Kennedy writes with the warm understanding and cold precision of a master.'
'Cate Kennedy is a singular artist who looks to the ordinary in a small rural community and is particularly astute on exploring the fallout left by the aftermath of the personal disasters that change everything.'
Eileen Battersby, Irish Times