“Simon Van Booy knows a great deal about the complex longings of the human heart, and he articulates those truths in his stories with pitch-perfect elegance. Love Begins in Winter is a splendid collection, and Van Booy is now a writer on my must-always-read list.” — Robert Olen Butler, Pulitizer Prize-winning author of A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain and Severance
A new collection of stories from award-winning writer Simon Van Booy that explores the beauty of connection and the anguish of loss.
In Love Begins in Winter, Simon Van Booy offers intimate scenes of tragic loss, redemptive tales of unlikely connection, and breathtaking moments that never really end. These stories, set around the world, are a perfect synthesis of grace, intensity, atmosphere, and compassion.
From a famous French cellist who heals the heart of a lost woman to a suitor who polishes eggs, from heroic gypsies to generous gondoliers who can sing, Van Booy writes eloquently about the difficult choices we make in order to maintain our humanity.
Van Booy's sentimental second collection deals heavily in the neuroses and personal traumas of his characters. The longish title story follows Brunno Bonnet, an emotionally debilitated cellist with a fondness for stones who encounters Hannah, a bird-obsessed shop owner with a fondness for acorns. In the beautiful "The Missing Statues," Max, a young diplomat is reduced to tears at the edge of St. Peter's Square in Rome as memories of childhood in seedy Las Vegas overwhelm him. In the excellent "The Coming and Going of Strangers," a multigenerational story of heroism, tragedy, love and family finds its roots with Walter, a Romany Irish gypsy who falls in love with a Canadian orphan girl. Though Van Booy's tendency to deliver a late-story surprise becomes predictable, each of these stories has moments of sheer loveliness.