Two friends are inexplicably drawn to a carnival-like orchid garden. A man works obsessively on restoring a mansion he has inherited. An urban dweller is haunted by the echo of cries in the night. A traveller is lured by highway signs directing him to a place that he has always known.
The stories in Home, the follow-up to Mark Macdonald's acclaimed novel Flat, feature characters searching for truth and clarity in a world that is sometimes deceptive, usually miraculous, and often inescapable. Full of dark compulsions and seemingly irrational tendencies, Home is a place where all is not as it seems: authority figures defy reality, and fate takes charge as life and death become mere observances.
Informed by terminal illness and a trust in the wonders of the world, these stories are about anxiety, foreboding, and a sense of calm resignation and peace with matters beyond our control.
Macdonald has written a literary, yet entertaining and imaginative, collection of stories that stands apart from, say, eighty per cent of the other Canadian short story collections of recent years. . . Home is truly something different for a change.
-Front & Centre
Macdonald's fictional world is shadow-filled, chaotic and suffused with the uncomfortable feeling that all is not what it seems. [He] is a young writer who definitely has something to say.
. . . Macdonald's sexual orientation is not a constant issue. . . it is not the subject of his entire oeuvre. His stories adhere to the "I'm here, I'm queer, and I'll talk about it if it comes up in the story" school of writing. Whether that qualifies Home as gay literature or simply literature by a gay author is an argument not worth having, since either way the miscellany is a worthwhile find.
-Gay People's Chronicle