If you’re not already familiar with Sarah Pinkser’s work, then heave yourself out from under that giant rock, and brace yourself. Lost Places is Pinsker’s latest collection of stories, all of which are beautiful in their own way.

The collection starts with Two Truths and a Lie, Pinsker’s amazing Nebula and Hugo-winning novelette, about a strange, half-remembered TV show. There’s a reason why it’s so popular, it’s a wonderful story. You’ll also find another of Pinsker’s award-winning stories, Where Oaken Hearts Do Gather, an incredibly clever tale about the origins of a folk song.

Pinsker summons an entirely believable New York history in I Frequently Hear Music in the Very Heart of Noise. No spoilers, but I was genuinely shocked to find one of the characters wasn’t real. Pinsker is a real master of creating entirely believable fiction. Another historical story in this collection is A Better Way of Saying, where a young man finds an uncanny ability to change stories while narrating silent movies. 

There are two stories especially that stood out as incredibly hopeful, and both revolved around the friendship and empowerment of young women. In Everything is Closed Today, girls unite in a love of skateboarding, and channel that confidence into something bigger. And in Science Facts, a troupe of Girl Scouts find a connection in something strange. As a woman, and a mother, these stories brought me so much joy, and captured the magic of girlhood so beautifully. 

If you’re already a fan of Pinsker’s work, and you’re familiar with her heartbreaking story Remembry Day, prepare to have your heartstrings tugged anew with Remember This For Me, a story about an artist with a dementia-like illness, and a very unique muse.

Some of these stories have appeared in publications already, but to read the stories altogether is a reminder of just how talented Pinkser is. No two stories are alike, and they are all magic. 

Lost Places is released on May 2nd, 2023. You can pre-order now from Small Beer Press.

Huge thanks to Gavin at Small Beer Press for the ARC via Edelweiss.

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