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Roberta Silman

Roberta Silman is the author of BLOOD RELATIONS, a story collection, and three novels, BOUNDARIES, THE DREAM DREDGER, BEGINNING THE WORLD AGAIN and a children’s book, SOMEBODY ELSE’S CHILD . Her stories have been published in The Atlantic Monthly, The New Yorker, Redbook, McCall’s and many other magazines here and abroad. She has won The Child Stduy Association Award, Honorable Mention for the PEN Hemingway Prize and the Janet Kafka Prize, has been cited in Best American Short Stories, and is the recipient of a fellowship from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. Her book reviews have appeared in the New York Times, The Boston Globe, VQR and other newspapers and journals. Her stories have most recently appeared in VQR, the last in Spring 2003.


A Consummate Artist

Spring 2002 | Criticism

Like her character, Mandy Ringer, in Sapphira and The Slave Girl, Willa Cather was "born interested." She wrote from many vantage points: autobiographical, historical, male, female. She understood that producing literature was not finding your subject, then repeating yourself endlessly, but approaching each new work with a fresh and inquiring eye. Thus she fit no type. Although Alfred Kazin called her "a consummate artist" in 1942, most critics, who were male, did not know what to do with her.


“A Radiance of Attention”

The Flashboat: Poems Collected and Reclaimed. By Jane Cooper. W. W. Norton. $23.95. Jane Cooper's latest book is cause for celebration. This new volume includes all of her previously published work as well as poems hitherto not available in book [...]

Winter Dark

"A gypsy, I swear she's as dark as a gypsy," Judith blurted, a tinge of distaste in her bright blue eyes as she regarded their little girl, Jessica. The pride of their life, who at almost two-and-a-half years old was considered brilliant, beautiful [...]

The Scent of Lilacs

A last they've all gone away: they've taken their soup pots, pasta bowls, lasagna pans, pie plates, the vases they stuffed—first with chrysanthemums and dahlias, and later with sedum and asters and fall hydrangeas. Brittle pods skitter like mice [...]

Her Father’s Voice

Silka says that if more people on this beautiful earth believed in God they would have more respect for one another and our natural resources. That the thousand lakes of Finland wouldn't be so polluted, songbirds wouldn't be disappearing, and so ma [...]