Chrysalis By Anuja Varghese

Chrysalis is a debut collection of short stories by Anuja Varghese. These stories are fantastical, surreal, complex and often quite sensual. The stories vary from one to the other, but all are powerful and draw on folklore and fairy tales while having an unwavering feminist lens.

Varghese connects us to the dissatisfaction that can come from immigration and the lack of power racialized women can have, especially here in Canada. The poignant way she describes anger and shaping yourself to be someone you don’t want to be, to fit in, blew me away in “Stories in the Language of the First.” There are stories of queer love, of belonging, of being forced out of families. They are genre-binding and often surprising.

These stories ask us to ponder what family and cultural expectations mean in the wake of being ourselves, of being who we want to be. These stories ask us who belongs and how we make others feel who don’t. This is a powerful punch of stories, a small volume that holds a lot of meaning and beautiful storytelling that will no doubt, cause you to think.

ANUJA VARGHESE is a writer and editor in Hamilton, Ontario. Her stories have been recognized in the PRISM International Short Fiction Contest and the Alice Munro Festival Short Story Competition and nominated for the Pushcart Prize.

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Astoria (March 14 2023)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 208 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 1487011660
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-1487011666

Laurie Burns is an English as additional language teacher to immigrants, literacy volunteer and voracious reader living in Dartmouth.