190 pages
ISBN 0-385-65946-6
DDC C813'.54





Reviewed by Sarah Robertson

Sarah Robertson is the editor of the Canadian Book Review Annual.


Michael Redhill’s first novel, Martin Sloane (2001), won the
Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for Best First Book Canada/Caribbean and
was short-listed for the Giller Prize. His first collection of short
fiction deftly explores broken relationships and the moments of
dislocation that occasionally visit, and unsettle, ordinary lives.

“It’s pretty easy to be rotten to the one you love.” This
sentiment, expressed by a woman in a failing marriage, suffuses many of
these disquieting, compassionate, and wryly humorous tales. The
emotional distance between a travelling salesman and his ex-wife is
painfully laid bare during an overnight visit. A married couple discover

sex video featuring their teenage daughter. An office manager
rationalizes an adulterous affair by contemplating “the reality of the
briefness of life.” A depressed poet retreats to a cabin in the
country to get over a breakup. A woman refuses to have sex with her
husband until he has a vasectomy.

Redhill is a critically acclaimed novelist, poet, and playwright. In
this subtle and finely crafted collection, he demonstrates a comparable
gift for the short-story form.


Redhill, Michael., “Fidelity,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed May 19, 2024,