Island Life and Other Stories
Date of Award
Master of Fine Arts (MFA)
David Anthony Durham
"Island Life and Other Stories" includes short fiction and creative nonfiction by Linda Mahal. In the title story, a chance encounter with a child in Grand Cayman invites a failed insurance executive to confront the past. In "Roman Holiday," a New Jersey housewife recalls an alien abduction in a time of global warming. " The Incredible Jimmy Chen" explores the culture of kids in post 9/11 America. An Irish immigrant confesses his love and lust in "The Ballad of Reading Gaol." In "Body and Soul," a young woman must decide whether to keep walking in circles or strike out for a territory of her own. "The Dog" investigates what it means to be rescued. "Girls Play Hopscotch" juxtaposes the sights and sounds of the suburban pastoral with the costs of American imperialism. An elderly man struggles to balance grief, caregiving, and providing for his family in "Holding Patterns." In "Penny," a middle-aged heterosexual woman weighs the risks and rewards of romantic love. "The Alones" is an experiment in speculative fiction, an introduction to a feminist dystopia/utopia. "The Way of Tea" is a different kind of abortion story. In "The Recital," a divorced mother contemplates life after infidelity. "Leaving Mr. Rodriguez" is an excerpt from a novel in progress.
Mahal, Linda, "Island Life and Other Stories" (2020). Stonecoast MFA. 114.