The Pull of the Moon
About the Book
Winner of the 2015 City of Victoria Butler Book Prize
A Globe and Mail top 100 pick for 2014
Winner of a 2015 Independent Publisher Book Award Bronze Medal
Twelve short stories that examine what happens in the lives of characters who discover shocking truths about the people they thought they knew best.
Whether set in a cottage or a Montreal market, a graveyard or a backyard, these stories transport you into the lives of people you’ll recognize. Your neighbours may not want to make squirrels into pets or sell you a piece of the moon. Your son may not be asked to donate sperm to his girlfriend’s mother. Your sister may not want you to bring a dead cat across the border. You may not have an imaginary husband, a secret brother, or a friend who has turned to murder in a custody battle. But in each of these stories, people are trying to figure out how to live in a world that doesn’t always seem hospitable.
With her keen poet’s eye, Julie Paul examines human nature and animal instinct, as the characters in The Pull of the Moon try to negotiate their impulses and desires. Ultimately, they want what most of us want: connection, belonging, love, and forgiveness.
“A reminder that we are dealing with humans and human behaviour seen up close: funny, sad, inadequate, tragic, venal, conflicted, desperate, sometimes even noble. This particular cartography is often entertaining, frequently disturbing, and always illuminating.” —The Coastal Spectator
“Modern short stories can be plotless, pretentious and downright irritating. This isn’t a problem with the work of Paul, who writes insightful and entertaining stories, often with a West Coast connection. Her male central characters tend to be good men felled by grief. Her women can be loopy and fanciful. This new collection of 12 stories doesn’t disappoint.” —The Toronto Star
“The through-line in Julie Paul’s second collection of stories is a small yet powerful transformation in character: in each, a person feels the near-physical pull of something outside themselves… Collections can be hit-and-miss affairs. This one is thoroughly good.” —Globe and Mail
“[It] explores what you might find when you scratch beneath the surface of someone else’s life . . . There is genuine humanity and insight that leads to understanding.” —YAM Magazine
“Paul’s voice is a strong one, and her characters a worthy study. Add to this The Pull of the Moon’s surprising cohesion, its weave of both obvious and deeply buried repeating themes and images, and the result is a collection worth noting.” —FreeFall Magazine
“This is writing of emotional veracity with an edge, of humour alongside gravity, of darkness tempered with blithe optimism. The pull of Julie Paul is powerful.” —Rover
“The stories in The Pull of the Moon range from funny-sexy through funny-grim to outright harrowing. They are all good . . . Between Paul’s range and virtuosity, most readers will find something to glom onto. Simply put, this is a good collection of short stories and well-worth a read. ” —The Other Press
“The Pull of the Moon isn’t a world of straightforward happy endings. It’s a world where nothing is perfect, and people must learn to live with each other, despite their loved one’s complex flaws. Julie Paul’s Pull Of The Moon consistently succeeds in portraying such a world, thanks to Paul’s ability to capture both the warmth and the strangeness of the way people behave.” —The Winnipeg Review
“Paul is both a superb story teller and a fine poet. She wastes no words. Her characters are believable, sympathetic — and highly unusual. These twelve stories are funny—often very funny—but they tingle with human longing and fear… You’ll want to buy this one for your friends. And then borrow it back.” —Arleen Paré, award-winning author of Lake of Two Mountains
“Julie Paul’s wistful, charming stories—full of humour and subtle revelations—strike gently but powerfully at the heart. The Pull of the Moon is a delight.” —Shaena Lambert, author of Oh My Darling
“A collection laced with surprises and deftly woven moments of wonder. Julie Paul’s is a world where families, friendships, and relationships fall apart, and where desperate people struggle to put them back together.” —Daniel Griffin, author of Stopping for Strangers
“Fresh and contemporary . . . real life captured eloquently and with sublety.” —Lee Henderson, author of The Man Game
“Danger: High Voltage. Julie Paul’s stories are masterful and sexy.” —Kathleen Winter, award-winning author of Annabel
“The stories are good, and true to the title, they’ve got that quality of lunar tug that makes one feel a little under the influence of something bigger than themselves.” —Jill Margo Mini Mag