Sunday 3 March 2024

Makenna Goodman, The Shame

It doesn't happen often, but sometimes a book comes to you at just the right time, when you didn't know you needed it most. 

Makenna Goodman's superbly written The Shame was one such story. This novel pierced me and recognised me and this current moment to an uncanny degree that my image of the protagonist Alma's Vermont house and garden merged with the very new, real experience of moving into my new house in and having a garden of my own for the very first time. 

The feeling that a book could have been written with you and your history in mind is curious. The sense of seeing and knowing you get from a person you don't know but who speaks (to you? to a group of yous? to a person they imagined could be like you or completely different from you?) from text on a page is, in rare but precious instances, like magic, a challenge to the time space continuum as well as to the idea that you are individual, unique, in a manner both humbling and disarming.  

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