In Katherine Vaz’s new collection of short fiction, beauty is continually and painfully present in all places–in a Thanksgiving dinner assembled by a widowed DMV worker being stalked by an irate customer; in a middle-aged Hollywood actress who captivates a young studio animator for decades; in the aftermath of an unthinkable tragedy; and in a daughter’s memories of the ethereal, melting ice sculptures made by a woman embroiled in an affair with a wealthy lawyer.
Amid their complex, turbulent relationships in a chronic state of crisis, Vaz’s wise and restless protagonists carry within them the seeds of a vanished, gracious world of urbane dinner parties and passionate affairs–a humane and cultured civilization whose flawed inhabitants are redeemed by their ability to blend the aesthetic imperative with the power to love.
Advance Acclaim for The Love Life of an Assistant Animator & Other Stories
“Katherine Vaz stories always pull me in–the heartfelt intensity, her intimate knowledge of her characters, their places, human nature–each one makes me happily her captive, for as long as the story lasts. Her newest collection is a triumph for us all.”
– Alexander Chee, author of Edinburgh and The Queen of the Night
“What rich, eccentric, at times even farcical joys these stories evoke–and, at the same time, what poignant, aching sorrows. Vaz’s characters, from the gravity of their family ties to the folly and grace of their soaring aspirations, take us deep inside ourselves and our never-ending struggle to find our way in a world that changes far too fast around us.”
– Julie Glass, author of Three Junes, The Whole World Over, and The Widower’s Tale
“Katherine Vaz is a brilliant writer. These stories are gorgeous at every level–singing sentences and pull-you-in plot. She is the real thing, an American treasure.”
– Tayari Jones, author of Leaving Atlanta, The Untelling, and Silver Sparrow