Such a Lovely Afternoon is a dazzling debut collection from award-winning Yukon writer Patti Flather.
A feisty young tomboy grapples with gender roles with sometimes hilarious results, a refugee single dad struggles for dignity in his northern community, and a malfunctioning compost toilet and wacky neighbours upturn a woman’s island cabin life, among other tales.
Against vivid landscapes from Canada’s West Coast to Hong Kong to the Yukon, Flather reveals poignant beauty, compassion and humour in everyday lives, with characters searching for identity and belonging, delving into their resilience and humanity.
“Fall into Such a Lovely Afternoon in the middle of the night. These take-no-prisoners, let-your-hair-down stories are a heart-to-heart with your BFF about love, loss, and the lives of women making themselves up in the late 20th century, choice by choice, at the edge of the world. Patti Flather’s stories are literary lightning.”
—Linda Svendsen, Guggenheim winner and author of Marine Life and Sussex Drive
“Patti Flather’s tender stories transported me in place and time and into the lives of characters who were rendered so powerfully that they, by turn, broke my heart and made me smile with laughter. Such A Lovely Afternoon is the fiction debut of a seasoned and accomplished storyteller.”
—Kevin Chong, author of The Double Life of Benson Yu
“In story after story, Patti Flather sweeps aside the veil that blurs our days, giving us glimpses of the raw reality lurking behind our everyday lives: a crude remark from a friend, a brief but vicious argument, landing a dead-end job—and then it’s back to the ordinary. Her vision is like a flash of muscle under torn skin, reminding us that one of these days, maybe tomorrow, the skin is not going to heal.”
—Wayne Grady, author of The Good Father
“Flather writes with a fearless honesty that makes you wince with recognition and weep with relief that there’s someone who can put the complexity of living into words. These stories are soaked in the light and darkness of Canadian intergenerational experiences. Flather takes us north, west, and to the far east, right into the hearts of characters trying to get out from under their own lives, whether they’re travellers, adolescents, parents, or political refugees. Her captivating, lively, and heartrending stories are peopled with characters as troubling, provocative, and lovable as our own friends, families, and acquaintances can be. You’ll find yourself buying extra copies of this book because, as much as you want others to read it, you can’t bear to give your copy away.”
—Joanna Lilley, author of Endlings