Read This and Tell Me What It Says


Author of the widely acclaimed novel Vinegar Hill, A. Manette Ansay returns to the fictional town of Holly's Field, Wisconsin, and the midwestern landscape that surrounds it in her first full-length story collection, Read This and Tell Me What It Says.

Here are the lives of rural people struggling to make sense of the isolated and often intensely religious worlds in which they live. Marie, a young wife and mother, recalls the effects of a statutory rape trial on her small community. Stuart, a devout teenage boy, dares to rename himself "Start," the only significant thing he has ever done without first consulting God. Widowed Eliza discovers her husband's ghost in the bathroom, flipping through pages of the Popular Mechanics magazines she had thrown out after his death.

With grace and compassion, Ansay reveals the extraordinary interior lives of ordinary people. The result is a rare glimpse into the complex human equation of spiritual loneliness, desire, and hope.

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