From Argentina to Siberia, Papua New Guinea to London and New York, Light Box explores lives in transition, in a world where boundaries and human relationships are shifting. An astronaut struggles to adapt to life back on earth; a young man discovers he is going blind in a foreign city; a retired plastic surgeon uncovers old wounds; and two lovers become unexpectedly intimate. Each tale in K J Orr’s moving collection is charged with the irrepressible human urge to connect in the face of disorientating change.
With exquisitely cadenced storytelling, Orr introduces us to worlds and places that are both familiar and askew. Her landscapes are instantly recognisable, yet tinged with a lingering sense of uncertainty. The result is a wonderfully diverse and captivating debut from a rising literary talent.
‘A distinctive new voice. These stories are so elegant and considered, yet charged at the same time with a fierce energy.’ – Tessa Hadley
‘Orr is an absolutely natural short story writer . . . Light Box is, above all, a luminous collection. It reveals, with beautiful acuity, what it is to be human, tender and fallible.’ – Alison MacLeod
‘Wonderful. Each story contains enigmatic, piercingly clear images and startling gestures that illuminate its characters in all their passions and furtiveness.’ – Colin Barrett
‘A globe-trotting wonder: atmospheric and haunting, delicate and fierce. KJ Orr writes with radical precision and beauty, and this collection shines a masterful light on the quiet, often unseen moments that have the power to remake a life.’ – Laura van den Berg
‘In these stories, chance encounters threaten to destabilise relationships, inspire treacherous voyages, and reveal the fissures on which our identities are constructed. The language is scintillating, the insights piercing . . . a stunning debut.’ – Adam Marek