University of Alberta Press

Book details

Publication date: April 2013
Series: Robert Kroetsch Series
Keywords: Canadian Literature;Short Stories
Subject(s): FICTION / Short Stories (single author), Canadian Literature;Short Stories, Literature, Short Stories
Publisher(s): The University of Alberta Press

Astrid Blodgett. Astrid Blodgett is a freelance writer and editor living in Edmonton.

Astrid Blodgett was announced as one of the 12 contributors to The Journey Prize Stories 24. Congratulations! http://www.facebook.com/TheJourneyPrize/posts/10151067884019227


"You Haven't Changed a Bit, a compilation of 13 stories, took 10 years to complete. For the Literary Cocktails reading, Blodgett has picked Ice Break, a story about a family that goes ice fishing on Lake Wabamun. They never start fishing because as they drive on the ice, it cracks and breaks." St. Albert Gazette, April 20, 2013


"These thirteen stories are a breath of fresh air. Blodgett's writing is clean and spare. The stories are intelligently written, and great care has clearly gone into crafting them. Details are carefully chosen to reflect larger relationships and moments; Blodgett has a terrific knack for sketching out complex relationships with telling little moments that are deftly and subtly rendered. I was filled with writer envy, wishing I'd written the last line of 'Ice Break.' A perfect little moment, so honest, so true and so shocking for that." Leslie Greentree


"Astrid Blodgett's stories are acutely rendered picture-poems of the way the world is. The beauty, the shock, the frissons of love and dread--it's all there. A compelling new voice." Caroline Adderson


"In You Haven't Changed a Bit, Astrid Blodgett lights a fuse. She takes us deep into the country where alfalfa brushes against the skin, where ice and sky merge, where people we've known since childhood live. Powerful fiction has a way of detonating after a book has been set down--these stories snap and burn." Anne Simpson


"In her story 'Ice Break,' Astrid Blodgett ties, hangs, and tightens a noose of narrative with a masterful touch. Every word in this story is essential, and you can almost hear the text cracking beneath you as you venture out upon it, inching further from the shores of its beginning. In this quiet prelude of tragedy, Blodgett has crafted a tale that lives in your mind long after you've broken through." Jurors' remarks, Journey Prize


"Astrid Blodgett explores lives in flashpoint and innocence meeting regret forever in "You Haven't Changed a Bit" (University of Alberta Press). My favourite stories are "New Summer Dresses" and "Ice Break." What a read. Congratulations, Astrid, on a collection I'll be thinking of for a very long time. :) Congratulations. What a gorgeous book." Richard Van Camp, May 16, 2013


"Blodgett puts forth a baker's dozen of stories, each one a revelation of acumen and economy.... Blodgett is astute at fleshing out characters and expounding on situations with just the right words or phrases, a very tough skill to acquire. These are plausible people in plausible moments. Everything rings true.... There's the sinister brilliance of tone of Giving Blood, a story that tells the reader so much through its atmosphere, not by actual scrutiny of events. Getting the Cat reveals so much of its protagonist through his voice. Ice Break is heart-stopping with its staccato time shifting and minutiae of a tragedy in progress. 'My God, this is brilliant!'" Scott Hayes, St. Albert Gazette, May 15, 2013


#2 on the Edmonton Journal's Fiction Bestsellers list for the week of May 24, 2013


"...'New Summer Dresses,' which begins as a piece of straightforward naturalism about two girls on summer vacation, only to take a sharp detour into much darker and creepier territory in its climactic stages. Blodgett effectively seeds the ground in the course of the story, while still ensuring that the final pages retain a significant punch. Like the best stories in the collection - 'Zero Recall,' 'Tattletale' - 'New Summer Dresses' features a strong narrative line and an undercurrent of astringent irony that results in a propulsive reading experience." Steven W. Beattie, National Post, June 21, 2013


"Individually, the stories are highly engaging, with authentic characters and trajectories packed with punch.... The writing is sparse and economical, which complements the suspense and bleakness of the tales. Blodgett presents a collection solidly crafted with details that leave the reader both captivated and unsettled." Kat Main, Alberta Views, December 2013


"Highly Recommended. *** ½ out of 4" Dave Jenkinson, CM Magazine, February 21, 2014 [Full article at bit.ly/1eHenNr]


"The characters in Astrid Blodgett's You Haven't Changed a Bit live rather than perform. They are being recorded rather than created. And they are being recorded covertly in their kitchens and trucks rather than under the lights of reality TV. Even under the scrutiny of the reader, the characters act without the self-consciousness of being trapped in fiction. Blodgett's debut collection is a prime example of literary short fiction: she satisfies the voyeuristic impulse; her voice is like clear water; she attends to ordinariness with reverence. Most of all, she enters and enlarges one's privacy in preparation for living a more attuned life." Jurors, 2013 Danuta Gleed Literary Award


"The characters in Astrid Blodgett's short stories have a way of getting under our skin to the point that, in many instances, you want to climb into the pages of her first book You Haven't Changed A Bit and give them a piece of your mind, or more... It is easy to empathize with the everyday characters in Blodgett's stoiris. She paints her word pictures with the convincing, yet subtle, brush strokes of an anime master... Blodgett keeps her wide-ranging cast of characters firmly under control while subtly challenging readers to draw their own conclusions." Prairie Journal #61

Gordon Arnold, Prairie Journal


ReLit Award, Canada
Short-listed
2014
ISBNs: 9780888646446 978-0-88864-644-6 Title: you havent changed a bit