At the Owl Woman Saloon

B+
September 26, 1997 at 04:00 AM EDT

These stories are set primarily in the Pacific Northwest — the land of loggers and migrant workers — and they are peopled by stoic types who take revenge and tragedy on their own terms. In Tess Gallagher’s deft hands, it is plain to see that comedy and tragedy are two sides of the same coin in At the Owl Woman Saloon. The funniest story, ”The Poetry Baron,” a satiric portrait of a creative-writing teacher, is followed by ”The Woman Who Prayed,” the tale of a middle-aged woman who discovers that her postman husband has been having an affair. Like old parables, each of these stories has its own lesson. B+

At the Owl Woman Saloon

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At the Owl Woman Saloon

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