This week Harry considers “The Hummingbird Heart” from The Girl with No Hands and Other Tales.
This Friday I break away from the ensemble reviews to the known one story per review model and this week I’m covering “The Hummingbird Heart” – a lovely, well-crafted fairy tale with its roots in Greek mythology. The central theme here is motherhood. The protagonist, Ismene, is a mother trying to bring back her daughter, Antiope, to life by enlisting the help of a mage, Philotas. It’s a very barren description, which steals a lot of the magic from the story, but had to be said so that we can move forward.
Slatter uses danger, musk and sadness as ingredients for the ink she writes her stories with but in “The Hummingbird Heart” she forgoes the protagonist’s sexuality as a main focus and goes for distilled heartache to tell this mother’s desperate attempts to save her daughter’s life. The role of the mother in Slatter’s world is heavy.
The rest is here.