My Mother Died in the Phoenix Fire
by Jane Elsdon
304 pages, November 2011
Published by CreateSpace
Designed by Benjamin Daniel Lawless
You won’t want to put down this collection of twenty-two tales of survival and hope. They will keep you up at night and haunt you long past reading the last word. Ten of them are published here for the first time.
“Jane Elsdon’s stories will break your heart—and bind it up again.”
These stories take us from an everyday shopping trip in “The Redemption Dress,” to the exotic spiritual journey of a lifetime in “Pilgrimage in Braille,” when Sophie, its feisty, aging librarian protagonist signs up for a hike in the Himalayas. From the perilous vision quest of a Native American youth in the prizewinning “Blue Feather’s Quest,” to a young woman’s flight from home upon graduation in “Escape.” They expose abuse, murder, suicide, and deception. They witness family secrets uncovered, cultural evolution, and emotional erosion. They explore the yearning for love, the cost of finding it, and the miracle of reviving or rediscovering it. They lay open life’s complexities, paradoxes, and mysterious synchronicities, as well as its transformations. Small and large. “Her insights are jewels. ‘In a real sense we are all shackled in the stocks. The stocks of our own misperceptions, and our beliefs in limitations, and our reflexive need to judge those who appear different or sound different.’ Prepare to have your heart, mind, and soul touched.”