Lake and Other Stories


144 pages
ISBN 1-55128-039-6
DDC C813'.54





Reviewed by Martha Wilson

Martha Wilson is Canadian correspondent for the Japan Times (Tokyo) and
a Toronto-based freelance editor and writer.


With their lyrical descriptive passages and experimental phrasing
(“Café: café: café con leche. Café: café: café: café ...”),
these five short stories reflect Gerry Shikatani’s instincts as a
poet. Just as the reader begins to tire of wading in the stream of his
consciousness, he produces an image that reverberates like a deep soft
chord. “[T]he almost bald white-haired Soviet hammering a UN desk with
his shoe” is one character’s recollection of Khrushchev “in the
anxious days of the Cuban Missile Crisis.” Through his accumulation of
sensory details, Shikatani sometimes overwhelms, but one has to admire
him for respecting the reader’s intelligence. Issues surrounding
Japanese-Canadian history and family life thread through the stories,
but the collection as a whole has a very Canadian sensibility.


Shikatani, Gerry., “Lake and Other Stories,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed June 16, 2024,