Translated by Charlotte Coombe
Awkward family scenes, unfortunate health conditions, people on the brink of survival – this is what each of the short stories in this book captures, every ripple and every echo that travels from one person to another. With narrative ease and a seductive pull, Margarita García Robayo reminds us that sometimes intimate struggles are as fragile as they are political, and there is nothing but time that keeps us going.
Refreshing and luminous, both novellas in this book, the previously unpublished Sexual Education and Until a Hurricane Passes, can be read as rite of passage texts but also as stories of failed destiny as we see the characters face the truth about their own dreams. Longing to get out of the coastal village where she lives, an ambitious girl thinks up the best plan for escape: becoming an air hostess. In her cynical and sad voice and a dark, dirty city, we find the other side of the happy Caribbean. In this context, another American dream is lived and relationships start to crumble and bring claustrophobia. It’s a habitat that naturalizes petty violence and where the accepted code is competition and necessity. These texts ponder on the destiny of their characters in the middle of catastrophes that can be real, self-provoked or the result of conniving survival strategies.