A writing friend asked for reading recommendations — short stories, in particular — and my mind instantly went to “All I Know About Gertrude Stein,” by Jeanette Winterson, which I read about a month ago and couldn’t put down. Winterson’s prose here is mesmerizing. Here’s an excerpt:
Louise was in a relationship; it felt like a ship, though her vessel was a small boat rowed by herself with a cabin for her lover. Her lover’s ship was much bigger and carried crew and passengers. There was always a party going on. Her lover was at the centre of a busy world. Louise was her own world; self-contained, solitary, intense. She did not know how to reconcile these opposites – if opposites they were – and to make things more complicated, it was Louise who wanted the two of them to live together. Her lover said no – they were good as they were – and the solitary Louise and the sociable lover could not be in the same boat.
And so Louise was travelling alone to Paris.
I am Louise.