Lisa Goldstein’s unusual IVORY APPLES casts a lingering spell on the reader
For BOOKSHINE AND RAINBOWS, Steph Warren enjoys Lisa Goldstein’s IVORY APPLES.
IVORY APPLES is a story about stories and inspiration; growing
up and responsibility; accepting oneself, and making the best of what
you already have. This is not a happily-ever-after fairytale, but a
grimmer story of toil and trauma. But magic is magic, whatever the
flavour; and Lisa Goldstein’s glimpse into the dark secrets of
creativity casts a lingering spell on the reader that no counter-spell
can completely dispell.
BOOKSHELF FANTASIES offers similar sentiments.
[T]he book is different and unusual in all sorts of ways, and Kate
makes for a devious and menacing bad guy beneath her pleasant and
child-friendly exterior. I’d definitely like to read more by this
Photo: Doug Asherman
On Mary Robinette Kowal’s blog, Goldstein contributes a “My Favorite Bit” guest column centering around IVORY APPLES.
A long time ago I wrote a story about a man whose mother died. Like a
lot of people, my own mother had trouble with the difference between
fiction and non-fiction, and she was worried that the story meant that I
wanted her to die. I spent a lot of time trying to explain to her that
of course that wasn’t true, that stories didn’t work that way. I told
her that the man and his mother were made up, not based on anyone I
knew. I told her that the point of the story — the point of every story
— was to give the main character a problem to deal with, and that the
man’s problem was so terrible because he had loved his mother very much.
Even after all of that, though, she wasn’t convinced.
It was only years later that I realized I had never written about a
problematic mother, and that part of the reason was that I worried about
what she would think. (She read everything I wrote. Well, everything I
showed her, anyway.) After she died, though, I started a novel about
the worst mother figure you could imagine.
That sounds bad, doesn’t it? I didn’t run to the computer the day we
buried her, really. I started the book several years later, and even
then I didn’t completely understand why I felt free to write it.
For info on IVORY APPLES, visit the Tachyon page.
Cover by Elizabeth Story