Review: Abigail Ulman – Hot Little Hands

Hot Little Hands
Abigail Ulman

This is the debut of a ‘striking, wry, utterly fresh new voice in Australian Literature’. A collection of nine short stories cover ‘stumbling on the fringes of innocence, and the marks desire can leave’. If anything could bring me back into reading literature, I thought this novel would be it.

24681815I read at least five of the short stories (I had to say I had read half at least), and although the prose was fantastic, the characters believable, there was something about each storyline that left me grasping at anything that would give me meaning with them. I’d read each one, and feel sort of empty, not fulfilled.

For some reason I thought I would enjoy this set of short stories published by Penguin. Instead, I started them, found that I couldn’t get into them, and put it back on the shelf for a very long, and guilty time. Here I am, writing a review at least several months down the line.

I want to enjoy Australian literature, I really, really do. I feel so bad that I don’t even like my home country’s literature. Even when I studied it back in high school, and then in university, I couldn’t enjoy any of these texts (for my other reviews, see ).

Although I couldn’t finish it, I’m putting that down to the fact that I’ve stopped trying to get through novels that I can’t stand unless they belong to a specific author who has sent me a novel. I have so many novels to read that I don’t want to waste my time on something that I’m pretty sure I won’t love. I’d like to be proven wrong, but so far, this novel isn’t it.


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