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Painting Pictures and Other Stories

Painting Pictures and Other Stories - Gayle Gonsalves Received a copy of Painting Pictures and Other Stories By Gayle Gonsalves through the First Reads Giveaway in exchange for an honest review

"That was why one night, at an hour when the moon snooze
because no one was awed by its glow, I looked outside.
For some time I thought of venturing into dark streets
but was fearful that shadows would overwhelm me. I brushed
aside my temptations and finally stepped into the night."

Heavily involved in interpersonal relationships you get to see how life's hardships can manifest themselves in their every day occupations and artistic outlets. Picasso had his Blue Period which was distinguished by his depiction of drunks, family tragedies, the hopeless, and even very own self-portraits during his time of depression and sadness. In time Picasso had a personal revelation which introduced the Rose Period to the world that highlighted a time for optimism through the utilization of brighter colours to express warmth and life. There are still signs of resignation during this period, but in certain times resignation is appropriate as long as it's not shielding inner sorrow.

This book covered quite a few emotional events such as:

1)how found love's transformation into unrequited love,
2)the inner strength it takes to deny love in order to avoid
betraying the one's you love,
3)the patience needed on your journey from self-loathing to self-
4)how people marry for the tradition and status and jot the sanctity.

The book also depicts how the characters in the stories reacted to them:

1)from a few characters own wall of prized paintings and the solace
they bring,
2)an emotional representation found through wardrobe and hiding the
trauma it caused,
3)a poem to get you through the toughest of times,
4)the beauty and new found fun and friendships that mother nature can
5)that true friendships can conquer all.

This book showcases the effects that everyday events can have on your moods and how you can take advantage and be productive with them to protect from the burden that life may cause. One important theme was how art has the ability to immortalize a person feeling that they are on the cusp of obscurity.

I liked the stories in this anthology, but I can't get past the lack of emotional variation between them. For me these stories could have been told in a singular familial setting with one full-length novel that would have been incredibly multi-layered. As a collection it wasn't as impactful for me because the author stays within a safe zone. I understand the temptation to remain within the thematic boundary between stories but I felt a few risks would have achieved the same result with intense contemplation. I must say the writing is good and found the author to have more of an affinity for the brighter side of the colour spectrum which may indicate her disposition at the time of getting these stories together or the attitude she was trying to convey. One of my favourite moments in the whole book was the exchange between Nicole and Powell in the story Feel-Good Thing. I felt like I was at a high stakes poker table and Powell put all his chips in the centre of the table and Nicole called his bluff. That passage was awesome and the pride that I had for Nicole was palpable. The author's narrative was vivid and conversational and put you under the warm Caribbean sun with her use of character dialogue and her descriptions of native fauna while differentiating that with what was encountered in Canada. It was also nice for the reader to have some sort of artistic licence by giving us the allowance to connect some of the dots from the information revealed in the story and form our own interpretation of the various relationships. Don't accept hesitation in life, always stay desirous of what life can bring. You can't escape true love, you can only hope to contain it, because in the end love has no rules.

"Our relationship was an eternal flame that would
flicker but never burn out. Despite the strength of
our bond, I kept my accidental meeting with Shayne to
myself. He was locked inside a box, and I believed that
this was a secret that should be kept closed; there
wasn't a need to pry open that rusted lock."