Man Without Face


151 pages
ISBN 0-88750-953-3
DDC C813'.54





Reviewed by Susan Patrick

Susan Patrick is a librarian at Ryerson Polytechnical University.


In this collection of short stories, Frances Itani writes with a strong
sense of place, geography, and local color. “P’tit Village”
graphically portrays village life in 1950s Quebec; “Flashbacks”
depicts life in a Canadian internment camp for Japanese during World War
II; “Sarajevo” portrays present-day peacekeepers. Other stories
include evocative descriptions of nature and the sea.

The stories centre on difficult family relation-ships (particularly
between wives and husbands, and daughters and parents) and on situations
of unhappiness (death, alcoholism, infidelities, unwanted pregnancies,
and marriages gone wrong). The characters, however, are trying to come
to terms with their lives and the people they have become. Their ability
to survive the unhappiness of the past and present provides them with
the strength to face the future. These are moving stories that convey a
sense of optimism for human resilience.


Itani, Frances., “Man Without Face,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 20, 2024,