“Unravished is a bold foray into the human condition—a gorgeous, revealing meditation on class, perversity and apocalypse.”—Carolyn Cooke, author of Amor and Psycho and Daughters of the Revolution
“Hester Kaplan’s stories are lovely: smart, thoughtful, beautiful and wise, full of the small but important illuminations we need, as we make our way through our lives.”—Roxana Robinson, author of Sparta, Cost and other novels.
“These are stories for grownups, stories about those who find themselves ravaged—or maybe ravished is a better word—stories for those of us who feel ravished by time, by love, by loss, by the improvisatory nature of making-do. Hester Kaplan touches all the ache and anger we feel to life.”—William Lychack, author of The Architect of Flowers
In this haunting new collection of stories from award-winning writer Hester Kaplan, the past has a way of showing up when it is least welcome. In the title story “Unravished,” a woman reconsiders her marriage to a man bent on destroying a world famous landscape. In “The School of Politics,” a bored museum director struggles to understand her youthful affair with a corrupt politician. The fastidious preservationist in “The Aerialist” makes an emergency appointment to see the dentist who gave him advice on love years before. When two prickly private school colleagues in “This Is Your Last Swim,” find they are the only people left on campus in the days before the world’s end, they urgently and uncharacteristically come clean with their old secrets and shames. Masterfully written and emotionally packed, these stories seduce and startle, and remind us of the shifting ways we choose to narrate our own lives.
Hester Kaplan is the author of THE EDGE OF MARRIAGE (1999) which won the Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction, and two novels, KINSHIP THEORY (Little Brown), and The Tell (Harper Collins). Her stories and non-fiction have appeared in numerous literary journals and anthologies, including The Best American Short Stories series, Ploughshares, Agni Review, Southwest Review, Story, and Glimmer Train. Recent awards include the Salamander Fiction Prize, the McGinness-Ritchie Award for Non-Fiction, and a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. She is on the faculty of Lesley University’s MFA Program in Creative Writing, and lives in Providence, RI.