As a bit of a poor sleeper myself, I love a story about insomnia. I enjoyed our protagonist's journey out into the night, a place which, as anyone who has ever worked overnight shifts knows, has routines and denizens all its own. I also thought Loralee was a great character - Merrigan quickly conveys what we need to know about her with a few carefully chosen but telling details, such as her "cheap rings" and giant purple denim purse, and her scrappy, spirited conversational style.
In the background of this story, along with the constant hum, is the fact of our main character's wife, Hannah, being away. He feels the weighty oppression of loneliness, "...the house’s empty half bearing in on him." The noise, and the man's disquiet stay with the reader throughout the story. We are left to make of the noise and the characters what we will: is it our man's loneliness? Is there more to Hannah's absence than we know? Does the noise represent a more existential discontent? What will become of them all?
You may go ponder such questions for yourself here.
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Story Sundays is a weekly meme created by Ellen at Fat Books, Thin Women (currently on blogging break) and also celebrated at Novelniche: A Place for Books. Be sure to check out their blogs for wonderful Story Sunday selections and other excellent reviews!