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Tales from Ma's Watering-Hole by Kaye Linden

Tales from Ma's Watering-Hole

by Kaye Linden

162 pages
At shaman Ma's Sydney cafe outback refugees tell fantastic tales.

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Category: Fiction
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About the Book
Honorable Mention - Writer’s Digest’s e-Book Awards - Fiction

Honorable Mention - Leapfrog Press Fiction Awards

A Shaman goes Walkabout" (included in this collection) was nominated for a pushcart prize in 2011

Ma, an eccentric ninety- nine year old Australian aboriginal shaman, owns a Sydney café where the lonely and homeless gather. Each evening, Ma, or one of her quirky patrons tells a story.

Ma’s patrons feel disconnected from their lost outback lands, but gain comfort in community and stories. Tales from Ma’s Watering Hole is a linked short story collection woven together by magic realism and social commentary. It conveys the sardonic “tongue-in-cheek” humor of the Australian— resilient in hard times, spirits buoyed through camaraderie. These tales weave together nostalgic themes relating to lands lost, families scattered and the joyful support found in human companionship. "Ma" is the playful old trickster who holds these stories together.


Kaye Linden's stories are richly imagined, crisply written, and worth your time and money. In the title character, Ma, Kaye has created a character who belongs to the urban world as much as the outback, and who reflects not so much aboriginal culture as original culture, the culture each of us invents for our own purposes from the material of the world we happen to have been born into. Come on in for a drink, a story, and a character who makes her own rules and invents her own forms of magic. I love this book.
- Bruce Holland Rogers
In returning to Ma’s origins, to the land of Dreamings, Linden prods readers to look beyond the boundaries of their cities and lives, and to remember, as ancient cultures do, that existence is a progression of generations, each tied to the others, rather than the urges of individuals that seems so common today.
- The Los Angeles Review
Stories about shamanic journeys, healing practices and justice explore the relationships among the people, their land and their ancestors. The net effect is rough yet magical, practical yet playful, with an internally consistent authenticity that comes more from the author’s modern imagination than from tradition.

A fine collection evoking nostalgia for a simpler way of life.
- Kirkus Reviews


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About the Author
Kaye is an Australian living in Florida. She has an MFA in fiction, is past editor and short fiction editor with the Bacopa Literary Review, current assistant editor for Soundings Review, short fiction adult education teacher at Santa Fe College, and medical editor for “Epresent learning lecture reviews.”



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