Anita Felicelli; LOVE SONGS FOR A LOST CONTINENT; Stillhouse Press (Fiction: Short Stories) 16.00 ISBN: 9781945233043
Byline: Letitia Montgomery-Rodgers
"How easily the fictions that a closed circle of people told each other could grow wings, take flight as if they were the truth," declares "Deception," the opening story in Anita Felicelli's Love Songs for a Lost Continent. This logic penetrates the collection; paradigms topple and shift like dominoes as protagonists careen from displacement toward personal truth, each hoping they might find their way. The results are transcendentally messy, the characters' trouble electric.
Most characters share ethnic or cultural ties to the Indian subcontinent; Tamil people "longing for origins that might never have existed." Their experiences are diasporic, spanning India, the United States, France, and Madagascar, from where they unpack their identities for themselves rather than performing them for a colonial gaze, even when they wrestle with issues of culture, race, and ethnicity.
Recurring ties between parents, children, and places invoke questions about heritage and inheritance -- cultural, mental, and physical. Felicelli plays with the personal and cultural tensions that exist...