Okay, first off, I stole the title of my review. It was the title of a piece that Canada's National Film Board made about Jack Hodgins and his work, particularly Spit Delaney's Island.
One of the most important measures of a book is whether you understand and care about the characters. By the time you finish Spit Delaney's Island, you will feel like you know the folks who inhabit the stories, and you will be saddened by their tragedies and overjoyed by their triumphs. Hodgins peoples his stories with characters that could have come from your own life, or at least that you will wish did.
The stories in this volume, and indeed much of Hodgins' work, are set on the section of Vancouver Island where the author grew up. Their stories rise organically through Hodgins clear, exquisite prose. These are not loud stories, but they resonate with the strength of precise observation and the wonderful talent to tell a tale in which the reader cannot help but empathize with and indeed root for the characters.
If you enjoy this book, you should also check out the Barclay Family Theatre, and selection of stories by Hodgins.