Information about the author.
A Good House begins in 1949 in Stonebrook, Ontario, home to the Chambers family. The postwar boom and hope for the future colors every facet of life: possibilities seem limitless for Bill, his wife, Sylvia, and their three children.
In the fifty years that follow, the possibilities narrow into lives, etched by character, fate, and circumstance. Sylvia’s untimely death marks her family indelibly but in ways only time will reveal. Paul’s perfect marriage yields an imperfect child. Daphne unabashedly follows an unconventional path, while Patrick discovers that his happiness requires a series of compromises. Bill confronts the onset of old age less gracefully than anticipated, and throughout, his second wife, Margaret, remains, surprisingly, the family anchor.
With her remarkable ability to probe the hidden, often disturbing landscapes of love and to illuminate the complexities of human experience, Bonnie Burnard brings to her deceptively simple narrative a clarity that is both moving and profound.
Casino & Other Stories pulls us beneath the surface of convention into uncharted and often unpredictable emotional territory. In this remarkable new collection of nine stories we see the painful collision of youthful innocence and the bleak wisdom of age; the ironies of love and the complexities of sexuality. Several stories experiment with time and the random intersection of lives, becoming explorations of the pattern and texture of everyday experience. Others capture the bittersweet moments when we see clearly, if only for a brief moment, into our own hearts.
Resonating with the nuances of silence and speech between parent and child, women and men, the stories move easily through a broad emotional and geographical range—from small town childhoods to urban violence, from nostalgia for a simpler past to the tensions of modern life. Burnhard has a gift for recreating the tensions of family life and the frailty of love: marriages dissolve, parents fear for their children, young people face uncertain futures. Writing with deceptive simplicity, she seduces us with the unexpected, unnerve us with the feared.