Janice Garden Macdonald, author of the award winning The Plainness of My Fall, has branched out into the world of picture books.
The recently released Back Pack Books series includes 3 charming stories featuring cute insects who take children ages 2-6 on adventures in the forest and in the city. Do Butterflies Sleep explores the first day of school. Do Ants Have Uncles is a tale about an ant who accidentally gets taken to the city in a human's backpack and has to get back to the colony at any cost. Do Beetles Sing is about a lazy beetle who wants to play an instrument, but doesn't want to invest the time or energy in lessons.
Tania Staley for Readers' Favorite had this to say about Janice's short stories.
Janice Garden Macdonald’s poignant collection of short stories entitled The Plainness of My Fall is well worth the short amount of time it takes to read them. Every story within the collection, six stories in total, is an award winner, including the title story “The Plainness of My Fall” which was a Zoetrope All Story Winner with Joyce Carol Oates as a judge.
Macdonald’s stories seek to create deep emotion within the reader and the themes of each show the mystery and wonder that can occur within everyday life. The book includes stories of reminiscing past loves and lost youth, such as in “Why Waste Good Beer,” which tells of a woman’s pact with her husband to die together. Now faced with his imminent death, she must decide whether to go through with it.
The collection also includes stories about children holding onto dreams, and waking up to the ways of the world, such as in “The Corner Apartment,” which tells of a child’s struggle to retrieve the medallion she dropped in a storm grate, because she believes it will bring the luck needed to get her family into a larger apartment. Though the collection is short, there is a story within that will tug at the emotions of any reader.
The Plainness of My Fall was quite an enjoyable collection of short stories to read. While I believe that the collection would benefit from a few more stories in order to round out the book, I can find no fault in the stories that currently reside in this collection. Macdonald does a great job at manipulating a reader’s mood, and she makes great use of scene building within her stories. I highly recommend this collection of short stories to anyone looking for a quick, but affecting read, and I hope to read more from Janice Garden Macdonald.
Available in paperback, kindle and audio on Amazon in most countries.