Dimensions:8.25in x 5.5 x 0.7 in | 0.6 lb
Page Count:224 pages
Finalist, 2021 High Plains Book Award for Short Stories
Dear Hearts is a collection of character-driven stories that are whimsical, sometimes magical, unsentimental yet poignant, and focus on the ways in which girls and women who were teenagers in the 1960s experienced the changing cultural values shaped by feminism. Many of them are about the experiences of young women in high school and university, and explore their response to changing sexual mores. The characters are hearts of longing caught in the irony of the times, transitioning from the sixties right up to the present. Stories are presented in five parts: Tender Hearts, Geneva Stories, Surreal Hearts, Janet Stories and Sorry Hearts and reveal characters with a sense of longing and poignancy yet strength and quirkiness, too.
Barbara Miller Biles is a Calgary writer. She attended the University of Alberta and taught primary school until her own daughter and son were born. She explored fiction writing in extension courses and local writing groups. Her short fiction has appeared in Canada, the U.S., the UK, and Sweden, in various literary magazines including, FreeFall, The Nashwaak Review, The Antigonish Review, The Windsor Review,The Broken City, Turk's Head Review, Femmuary and others.
"Barbara Biles' writing is exquisitely rich in detail; it has the complexity of the art she hangs on the walls of her characters' lives, the books on the shelves, and the music that draws them into the dance. These are finely drawn characters living through cautious innocence and naiveté, magic and dreams, hidden secrets, broken families, and loss. There are no answers. Just the questions that are left in the heart and on the lips. Dear Hearts is the debut collection from an author who is gifted in storytelling and has honed the craft."
?Betty Jane Hegerat, author of The Boy
"In Dear Hearts, Barbara Miller Biles thoughtfully explores of the experiences of women and girls who grapple with love and finding their way in a world which is often confusing and unfair. Her stories contain multitudes of wisdom and whimsy, love and regret, shot through with quiet humour and more than a few touches of magical realism. A delight."
?Lori Hahnel, author of Vermin: Stories