Monday 8 January 2018

Review: Aquarium by Elaine Chiew

Aquarium Aquarium by Elaine Chiew
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This story is available at

I have a liking for open or ambiguous endings which is what we have here. The narrator, an airstewardess, is visiting her brother and his new girlfriend in Norway. Clearly more used to warmer climes the story is full of contrasts between hot and cold, rural and city lives, between the siblings old life and her brothers new one, their unspoken communication irritating the Norwegian girlfriend, the changes in her brother's life irritating the narrator. How will this crowd of three work out? There is a hint, nothing more, at an abusive father. There's biting comment from the girlfriend saying "You should come visit more often" then asking "why stewardesses don't turn right around and work the return flight"

SPOILER ALERT - The story focuses on the previously dog lover of a brother's new found fad for their aquarium of tropical fish. I love the line "What do you know, love is many things, but it's also a bloated tropical fish" leaving the reader to ponder what or who caused the bloated clownfish!(which can become agressive in captivity)

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