From New York City to the former East Germany, from rural Virginia to affluent suburbia, the characters in these short stories grapple with love, loss, greed, perversion, and other awful truths as they try to transcend their limitations with occasional humor and dignity. In “History on a Personal Note,” Lorraine, a Southerner, wonders if her German paramour will find the inspiration to leave his wife amidst the destruction of the Berlin Wall. In “Viewing Stacy from Above,” a pregnant woman descends into a pit of despair as she contemplates the constraints of motherhood. In “Money Honey,” a young adulteress who ditches her husband is reprimanded by an extended family of elders whose morals are even more dubious than her own.
Contemplative, allegorical, and witty, History on a Personal Note takes us into a world laced with black humor and makes us laugh — until it hurts.