WINNER OF THE 2015 FRANK O’CONNOR INTERNATIONAL SHORT STORY AWARD
From the orange desert of rural Australia to the snowy wastes of Siberia, from a Colorado jailhouse to a town square in northern England, Carys Davies’ characters traverse expanses of solitude: restless teenagers, middle-aged civil servants, and Quaker spinsters contend with domestic abuse, marital strife and a myriad of other challenges—revealing, through their struggles, the secrets of the human heart.
The seventeen stories in this lauded collection—written with prickly wit and punch, “as if Mark Twain and Annie Proulx had sat down at a desk together”—established Carys Davies among the strongest literary voices in Britain. Finally available in North America, The Redemption of Galen Pike introduces readers to an author destined for international acclaim.
PRAISE FOR THE REDEMPTION OF GALEN PIKE
“A perfectly formed gem … Davies has an enviable talent for creating entire internal universes for her characters … This sophisticated collection observes that everyone contains multitudes, and people’s darkest corners are what make them interesting. The book never falters in its delicate touch and confident, nuanced observations about the human condition.”—Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW
“Like Chekhov’s great stories Davies’ stories are deceptively simple. They reward re-reading not by resolving the core mystery, but by revealing layers of meaning and complexity.”—Ladette Randolph, Ploughshares
“The Redemption of Galen Pike is a beguiling story collection. With spare prose and deceptive simplicity, Carys Davies roams the incommensurable frontier between her characters, illuminating the unknowable with precision and style. I downed it like an elixir.” —Stephen Sparks, Point Reyes Books & Green Apple Books
“Davies’s stories plumb the depths of silence and estrangement, bringing up moments of extraordinary insight about what holds people together and what drives them apart.”—Laurie Greer, Politics & Prose Bookstore
“Davies has a Bierce-like ability to set the shot so perfectly you don’t see the target until it’s already bleeding. The redemption in question bristles with an electric irony so sly, it might be easy to miss if it weren’t both shocking and satisfying. Davies throws the reader into this constructed relationship between puritan do-gooder Patience Haim and Galen Pike, gruffian awaiting the gallows, to yes, meditate on the weird relational web of humans, but also to tell a damn good story.”—Ashanti White-Wallace, Word Bookstore
“There is nothing more satisfying than a short story collection that can leave one with a sense of wonder and fulfillment all at the same time. Carys Davies delivers this and so much more in her collection. Her stories are elegant brief interludes into the lives of others … and with each reading (you will want to read them over and over) one finds more depth to them than before.”—Lynn Riehl, Nicola’s Books
“This is the story collection for readers who are sick of knowing exactly what is coming next. In the manner of Edward Carey and Jesse Ball, Davies establishes an immersive world and tours a reader through it until a devastating revelation is too late to avoid.”—Todd Wellman, Boswell Book Company
“Great books are so often driven by voice, and the writer Carys Davies seems to have been inhabited by a multitude of them. I’ve only had time to meet a few of them, captivating and compelling all, so I can’t wait to get home tonight to have another few transport me on my way to dreamland.”—Jonathon Welch, Talking Leaves…Books
“Completely stole my heart … might just be my favourite short story collection of all time”—Simon Savidge, Savidge Reads
“[The Redemption of Galen Pike] confirms beyond doubt [Davies’] position among the finest British exponents of a particularly challenging form.”—The Irish Examiner
“Delicate, magical … Precise but full of beautifully observed details that fill compact vignettes with incident and emotion.”—Daily Express