Home Books and Movies Book review: Among Animals

Truth be told, I was reluctant to review Among Animals:The Lives of Animals and Humans in Contemporary Short Fiction. Short stories, to me, are like movie trailers, vignettes that leave you wanting more — except unlike movie trailers, the story is all there is. A collection of 15 short stories involving animals sounded like 15 small disappointments. I began reading where the book fell open, and can honestly say, there wasn’t a single disappointment. Varied as they are, there something for everyone, from the matter-of-fact, in which animals seem merely peripheral (The Ecstatic Cry), to the truly heartrending (Miriam’s Lantern). Some (like Meat) might even be thought humorous if you (unlike me) don’t have a huge emotional stake in the human-animal relationship . Among Animals has still not made an aficionado of short stories out of me, but it is a thoughtfully-chosen selection of great stories, and the whole was very enjoyable.

About Franziska Edwards

NARN board member, Franziska Edwards, became a vegetarian the day she adopted her first dog from a shelter in Italy. That dog made her realize that there was no important difference between him and any cow, pig or chicken. She just didn’t KNOW them as individuals. Her first daughter was seven-years-old at the time. Franziska explained why they were not going to eat meat anymore and her daughter was completely on board. It took another year of eating fish before she suddenly realized that in matters of suffering, fish are no different to cows, and she stopped eating seafood, too. Franziska has been a vegan for over 10 years and her three daughters are also vegan/vegetarian. After spending 12 years in the South, in Texas, Franziska has now lived in Seattle for 14 years and loves it. She has worked as an activist for 30 years, and worked in an animal shelter for ten, many of which were as a cruelty investigator.

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