So Much for That Winter: Novellas (Paperback)
Graywolf Press, 9781555977429, 160pp.
Publication Date: June 21, 2016
July 2016 Indie Next List
— Emily Ballaine, Green Apple Books, San Francisco, CA
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Dorthe Nors follows up her acclaimed story collection Karate Chop with a pair of novellas that playfully chart the aftermath of two very twenty-first-century romances. In "Days," a woman in her late thirties records her life in a series of lists, giving shape to the tumult of her days--one moment she is eating an apple, the next she is on the floor, howling like a dog. As the details accumulate, we experience with her the full range of emotions: anger, loneliness, regret, pain, and also joy, as the lists become a way to understand, connect to, and rebuild her life.
In "Minna Needs Rehearsal Space," a novella told in headlines, an avant-garde musician is dumped via text message. Fleeing the indignity of the breakup and friends who flaunt their achievements in life, career, and family, Minna unfriends people on Facebook, listens to Bach, and reads Ingmar Bergman, then decamps to an island near Sweden, "well suited to mental catharsis." A cheeky nod to the listicles and bulletins we scroll through on a daily basis, So Much for That Winter explores how we shape and understand experience, and the disconnection and dislocation that define our twenty-first-century lives, with Nors's unique wit and humor.