(SHORT STORIES) Trade paperback, Vintage Canada (September 2002) ISBN-10: 0676974473, ISBN-13: 978-0676974478. *To purchase, click The Book of Ifs and Buts.
Also available as an eBook, Vintage Canada (May, 2010) ISBN: 978-0-307-36996-3 (0-307-36996-X) * To purchase, click eBook link.
About the book . . .
From the publisher: “These stories tell the experience of immigrants as they take up new lives, often alone, in strange lands. With passion and a discreet comic sensibility, Maharaj brings poignancy and enduring beauty to lives that prosper, suffer, endure heartbreak and realize dreams.”
Praise for The Book of Ifs and Buts . . .
“Maharaj is superb at portraying the emigrant’s inner struggle—the conflict between present and past that we all experience, whether we emigrate or not. He articulates the psychological blocks that hinder a person from moving forward—or back. Then he turns such unlikely material into the stuff of legend.”
— National Post
“Maharaj drops the mask of sarcasm and feigned good cheer to show the raw need of the immigrants in his stories.”
— The Trinidad Guardian
“A bittersweet collection, The Book of Ifs and Buts is full of complicated truths and appealing surprises.”
— Montreal Gazette
“If his last book . . . was not proof enough, then this new collection certainly is. He is an extremely fine writer, whose sense of the comic and the tragic is as acute as is his ability to depict the absurdities and the subtle injustices of his native and adopted lands.”
— The Toronto Star
“Maharaj’s often superb storytelling and writing skills, his deft use of Caribbean dialect, and his honesty make me recommend this remarkable book.”
— Canadian Literature
“These stories work on modest premises, but they are elegant, melancholic, and often slyly funny.”