It’s beyond love. It’s knowledge. That’s what George Eliot had and so, I’m pleased to report, does Elizabeth Tallent. It doesn’t matter if she’s a good person, or even a nice one. (I don’t know her. I hope she’s nice.) When a writer can tell a story as beautifully, as thoroughly and with as much knowledge as Elizabeth Tallent possesses, no one should care.
The pivot point of each of the stories in Elizabeth Tallent's crafted collection, Mendocino Fire, is a kind of bravery, not always clean, not even always triumphant. The characters are not necessarily likable, they obsess, they obscure, they can be weak, they can be dense...But as seems to be one of the many ironies of humanness, as they run from themselves they get closer to who they are.