The Fairy Handbag" was the winner of the 2005 Hugo Award for Best Novelette, the 2006 Nebula Award for Best Novelette, and the 2005 Locus Award for Best Novelette. It was also nominated for the 2005 World Fantasy Award for Best Short Story
Kelly Link was a 2018 MacArthur Genius Grant winner. The announcement on the MacArthur Website has a very good over view of her importance.
Website of Kelly Link- Today’s story and several others are linked here.
My post from May 22, 2015 on “Valley of the Girls” by Kelly Link
As i concluded my post on “Valley of The Dolls” by Kelly Link I remarked I wanted to read more of her stories soon. Soon has turned into a five year hiatus.
“The Fairy Handbag” is the lead story in Kelly Link’s collection, Magic for Beginners. I like stories about fairies so I read it. It is tremendously fun, imaginative and a perfect lock down read taking you far from mundanities of this grim period.
The story revolves around Genevieve, a girl in her early teens, and her relationship to her a bit strange grandmother and a magic handbag of dog skin.
“Zofia claims to be from the country Baldeziwurlekistan and also to be the guardian of a community of fairies who now live in her black handbag. She often tells outlandish tales about the beings in her handbag and blames them for her overdue movies and library books. Things take a turn for the worse when Genevieve's boyfriend, Jake, snatches Zofia's handbag with the intent of finding out if the stories about it are true.” From Wikepedia
I Googled Baldeziwurlekistan, it seems purely fictional but perhaps in western Armenia. When ever villagers in Baldeziwurlekistan
are threatened by raiders they retreat into a Handbag made of Dog skin. There is magic at work here. A person can stay in the handbag twenty years. When they emerge twenty years have past, but they are only three days older. Sofia’s grandmother was the guardian of the handbag. Unfortunately it got sold to a big vintage clothing market by Genevieve’s boyfriend.
As I said five years ago, I hope to read more stories by Kelly Link soon.