Long Thin Strands by Margaret Allis
The setting of this collection of short stories is the landscape and cultural background of the small South Pacific nation of New Zealand (Aotearoa) - where it is common for lives to overlap. A family and community come together around the ordeal of a child’s abduction. A girl forges an unlikely friendship with a recently separated woman and attempts to form her identity free from the burden of her drug-addicted mother. A young man follows a quest to discover his culture and information regarding his missing mother. A man in his mid-life finds his passion - cross-dressing, in context with his life as a dentist, husband, and father.
The inter-linked stories in Long Thin Strands present recurring settings and reappearing characters whose lives and challenges cover diverse issues such as loneliness and grief, abuse and injustice, disability, and identity. While each story is a stand-alone short story, there is also a continuation of the narrative for many of the characters.
These stories draw from the connection on this island country, a metaphor of our global human struggles and inter-connectedness.
Themes of hope, courage and kindness as means of healing are an integral part of these interwoven narratives.
About the Author
Margaret Allis studied creative writing at Auckland University of Technology, graduating with a Master of Creative Writing in 2011. Margaret has enjoyed writing fiction and poetry for many years, Long Thin Strands 2021, is her first published book. Margaret worked as a physiotherapist for some years before beginning a family and currently she works as a caregiver and advocate for those challenged by disability. She graduated in hypnotherapy and Neuro-Linguistic Programming in 2019 and continues to incorporate themes of healing into her stories. Margaret is motivated by issues of social justice and works with her husband managing several charitable trust ventures. Together they have raised six children in Devonport, Auckland, New Zealand, where she currently resides.
Paperback | 127 x 202mm | 978-0-473-57818-3 | 2021 | Fiction, short stories | 285 pages |