For peace of mind I will lie about anything at any time.
— Amy Hempel, “Church Cancels Cow,” short story in her collection Tumble Down
Penelope had been at Torrance House for only one year, and it pleased Juliet that she had already made so firm a friend and had been readily accepted by her family. Also that she was going camping — something that regular children did and that Juliet, as a child, had never had a chance to do. Not that she would have wanted to — at Penelope’s age, she had already been buried in books — but she welcomed signs that Penelope was turning out to be a more normal sort of girl than she herself had been.
She ate meals that were nourishing enough, but monotonous.
— Alice Munro, “Silence,” short story in Best American Short Stories 2005