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White Elephants
By Katie Haegel, 127 pgs

By Katie Dunne
Tuesday, September 11 2012

White Elephants read less like a book and more like a letter from a friend, a friend who knows all about the art of the rummage and the nuances of reviewing yard sales. White elephants are the personal treasures that one finds at garage sales and flea markets. Katie has an eye for the unique and unusual. Her use of language is adorable. She’s a great story teller and her curiosity is engrossing. She picks up on tiny details about people, but she treats everyone gently in her descriptions and in sizing up their actions. It’s truly a joyful read, but it’s also tinged with sadness and grief, in the way happiness is in real life. Because when you relate to another person, they have history: an amalgamation of grief, nostalgia, pain, and also happiness. She touches on the death of her father and the strengthening of her relationship with her mother. This book will probably stay in my life for a long time, as I’ve inscribed it to my mom and given it to her as a gift. I know we’ll have conversations in the future while planning our future outings, as we agree with Katie about yard sale etiquette. –Katie Dunne (Microcosm Publishing 636 SE 11th Ave., Portland, OR97214, microcosmpublishing.com)



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