Short Story Review: Evie by Sarah Hall

Story Title: Evie by Sarah Hall
Collection/Anthology?: ***
Briefly: Out of the blue a wife displays a craving for chocolate and sweet things. Her yearnings quickly deepen, and she gets into something that can only be described as way more endorphine releasing.
Afterthoughts: Don’t get me wrong here, Evie is an accomplished piece of writing I guess, but personally I found it to be so explicit that it reached a point of being repellent to me. There is a reason for the story’s explicitness (to reveal it would be to give away the point on which this story hinges on), so perhaps Ms. Hall wasn’t writing solely for the ‘Shades of Grey’ affect, but for me this is the kind of story that I don’t want or don’t need to read. Call me prudish if you like, I just prefer to get my literary kicks in a more subtle.

Notable quote: She arrived home after work, sat at the kitchen table and took a large chocolate bar out of her bag. She said nothing, not even hello. She split the foil, broke it apart, and proceeded to eat the entire thing, square after square; a look of almost sexual concentration on her face.

Rating: ★★½☆☆

*What the Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award judges said about this story: Sarah Waters – ‘Evie’ is a deeply disturbing read, at once seductive and challenging – challenging, in part, precisely because it’s so seductive. It’s a story with important things to say; an extremely timely story.’

EFG Short Story Award This story was read as part of an overall review of the 2013 Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award shortlist. For further details of the award and the stories to be found on the shortlist, please visit the Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award section on the Booktrust website.

About Rob

Rob, a self-confessed bibliophile, is without any hope of rehabilitation. He gets unnaturally excited over anything book-shaped, and if book sniffing were a crime then he would have been locked up years ago (which wouldn't bother him in the slightest provided his cell was lined with books).