A new collection of short stories has wider margins- not strictly regional- but it is still the intense sense of place and time which gives this writing its special character, elliptic as much of it is. This is particularly true in Kin when a young girl's return to Mississippi revives a whole warm world of childhood and reveals that "places are the heart and soul of what goes on and what you talk about here" in the South. And again there is the assault of fugitive impression in My Love when two strangers, northerners, drive off for an evening below New Orleans. In the title story, a young girl is running away from unfulfilled expectations; a crossing to Naples, of eager mothers and eager daughters has moments of gentle comedy; there is eccentricity as well as pathos in the antebellum burning of an old home; etc. etc. All in all, a special talent this- stylised and sensitive- for special tastes.