In the Driver's Seat (2007) The hyperarticulate women in Helen Simpson's stories live half in the world, half in their overcrowded heads, worrying about cancer, traffic, kids, and their souls,… 2007-05-08 Fiction Short Stories Knopf
Book Review

In the Driver's Seat (2007)

EW's GRADE
A-

Details Release Date: May 08, 2007; Writer: Helen Simpson; Genres: Fiction, Short Stories; Publisher: Knopf

The hyperarticulate women in Helen Simpson's stories live half in the world, half in their overcrowded heads, worrying about cancer, traffic, kids, and their souls, sometimes all at once. A zippy collection, In the Driver's Seat, includes a few throwaway comic fables, but Simpson's best work chronicles what runs through a woman's mind in the course of a walk or, as in ''Early One Morning,'' a carpool drive. As Zoe listens to children discuss tapeworms, she contemplates macchiatos, divorce, and the arc of a mother's life: ''clear and wide to begin with, narrowing down to the tunnel of the middle years, then flaring wide again before the sands ran out.'' Or so she hopes. A-

Originally posted May 18, 2007 Published in issue #935 May 25, 2007 Order article reprints