Short Stories, Irish literature, Classics, Modern Fiction, Contemporary Literary Fiction, The Japanese Novel, Post Colonial Asian Fiction, The Legacy of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and quality Historical Novels are Among my Interests

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

"True Milk" by Aiya de la Cruz (from Best European Fiction 2015, forthcoming October 2014)

I am happy to be able to participate in Spanish Literature Month - 2014 hosted by Richard of Caravana De Recuerdos and Stu of Winstondad's Blog.  There are lots of great reading ideas on the event page.

I have chosen as my participation in the event to post on an excellant very creative story "True Milk" by Aiya de la Cruz.  The story will appear in the to be published in October Best European Fiction - 2015.  (I was kindly given an advance review copy by the publisher and it might be the best so far of this marvelous series of collections.)

"True Milk" is a vampire story with several interesting twists.  The narrator knows a vampire story is gone to be seen by Literati as pure pandering to teens and young adult readers and tries to rise above this.  There are really two intertwining narrative threads, one is a scholarly academic type account of the role Lord Byron had in shaping the notion of how a vampire should appear (I found this very interesting and well done.  The first vampire story, "The Vampyre"  was written by John Polidori in 1819.  He based the dress and style of the vampire on Lord Byron and that is why vampires are portrayed as suave overly stylish gentlemen.  (My post on Polidor's story contains background on this).

The narrator gives birth while she is doing her research on vampires. The story is told from her post birth hospital bed. The research part of the story is in italics and is really good, maybe the best part of the story.   Now the story takes a turn some would protest and babies are seen as kind of vampires.  The close of the story is very clever and I will leave it untold.  

Aixa de la Cruz was born in Bilbao, Spain, in 1988. She used the time afforded by an Antonio Gala Foundation grant to write Cuando fuimos los mejores (When We Were the Greatest) in 2007, which was a finalist in the Premio Euskadia de Literatura in 2008. With the help of a scholarship from the Caixa Galicia, she wrote De música ligera (On Light Music) in 2009. Her stage play I don’t like Mondays is being shown in Mexico this year as part of the Muestra Nacional de Teatro de Monterrey.

You can read this story here.

I liked this story a lot.  

I hope to post on the second short story originally in Spanish from Best European Fiction 2015 before the month ends.

Mel u

1 comment:

Richard said...

Thanks for this contribution, Mel, and sorry for the delay in making it over here. I wasn't acquainted with this author before your post, but I like the sound of the story and look forward to reading it when it becomes available. Will read that "Quarterly Conversation" interview with the author sometime this week.