With her passion for storytelling and her elegant prose, Ursula Hegi balances us on that magical border where laughter and sorrow become one. She knows the language of pleasure, the language of grace, the language of grief. A writer of great insight and imagination, Hegi manifesdts her bold range of vision as she enters the perspectives of lovers and loners, eccentrics and artitist, children and parents: a young man waits in a hospital room with his father, who has received the heart of a twenty-seven-year-old woman; a musician tries to protect her daughter from loving a blind man; a seminary student yearns for the certainty of faith that belonged to him as a boy; a woman transcends her embarrassment for her first love, who has tripled in size; a feud between two brothers contaminates and redeems their hometown.
Hegi's bicultural background enriches these eleven vibrant and luminous stories that are set in Germany, Italy, Mexico, and the US. From within this geographic diversity emerge the common themes as Hegi's characters take risks in searching out the unique place where faith thrives for each of them-a run-down hotel, the currents of Cabo San Lucas, an animal shelter, the embrace of an ex-convict.