Corinne Demas Bliss’s special gift is to render through delicate description, without hint of explanation, stories of rare insight, that come to us in the tones of conversation, as if over coffee and the tinkling of spoons. . . lovely, observant, realistic stories.
--The North American Review
There are nine equally compelling stories, mostly set in the East. Various sensitive and appealing characters appear in the stories . . the strength, quality, and the nature of emotional attachments are explored with subtle variation. . . Nothing holds still, we are reminded, and in these stories we get glimpses of our desperate and yet resilient attempts to make the most of the moment. . . The characters in these stories fascinate because of what they do with the inevitable changes and losses that occur.
--Studies in Short Fiction
Fans of Bliss’s novel The Same River Twice may be interested in these short stories of ambiguous emotions. In one, a woman’s visit to her parents confirms her suspicions that her mother’s disapproval will make their relationship one of frustration and anger, though her dutiful periodic visits will continue. In another, a college instructor falls in love with her most annoying student. In still another, a woman hibernates in her bed “sleeping it through,” after leaving her daughter to spend the weekend with her ex-husband. The stories are unresolved—as are the emotional conflicts within each character—yet each is satisfying as Bliss describes rather than tells, leaving small discoveries and conclusions to the reader.