On earth as it is
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On earth as it is

“Masterly… tales of sex, mortality and faith striated with compassion and humanity. The stories possess a rarefied beauty and a capacity to imagine the familiar afresh.”
Sunday Times

On earth as it is, short stories, published in Canada by The Porcupine's Quill, 1995
• in Quebec by L'instant meme, 1996
• in the UK and Australia by Granta Books, 1997
• revised edition, Vintage Canada, 2001

A Best Book of 1995: The Toronto Star

“Heighton writes beautifully of love and regret.”
The Globe & Mail

“Heighton writes convincingly… switching smoothly between lyricism and the erotic, between grandeur and an elegiac mood. He can carve out a scene of beauty in a few words, but is also able to realize the unremarkable with a vivifying simplicity.” —Times Literary Supplement

“Confirms the promise of his first collection… We are fortunate to be witnesses to the unfolding of this magnificent talent.” —Calgary Herald

“Heighton writes with elegance and a breathtaking audacity… and succeeds in defying the odds [by presenting] a second collection of short stories that is, if anything, even better than his first.” —Winnipeg Free Press

“His intense, multi-layered work demands concentration from the reader—-who will be rewarded at every turn.” —The Literary Review (U.K.)

“If a young Wallace Stevens were to have written fiction in Canada in this decade, he might well have produced a volume like this one. That's the best I can do to suggest both the scope and distinctiveness of Heighton's enterprise in On earth as it is.” —Canadian Book Review Annual

“Heighton writes amazingly well in the person of people whose experience he can only have imagined. Nevertheless, his own voice suffuses the book… [and introduces] an unmistakable literary talent.” —The Times

“[The final story], 'The Dead and the Missing', I would call the single best story of the year.” —Letters in Canada

“'To Everything a Season' is a marvellous story, one of the most moving I have read in the last decade: this is a writer… whose talent seems immense.” —Canadian Literature

“Heighton writes brilliant stories in which everything fits, the beautiful and very visual use of language, the rhythm, the intelligent storyline, and a discerning irony. With seeming ease he conjures one meaning after the other from trivial details.” —NRC (Netherlands) (trans. from Dutch)

“Heighton is a brilliant stylist unafraid of investigating the big questions of contemporary life.” —Vancouver Sun

“Stories propelled by a sense of bewilderment and urgency… One has the sense of being in the presence of a strong voice and a mind determined to wrestle with great themes.” —Montreal Gazette

“[The book is] both joyous and infinitely sad… powerfully poignant… Heighton is a writer of great talent whose work springs from an individualistic and highly personal vision.” —Ottawa Citizen

“These stories and novella are truly first-rate.” —Edmonton Journal

“There's not a wilting word in On earth as it is; these stories are real and rooted and vital.” —Quill & Quire (starred review)

“Rich and wonderful… A breathtakingly moving collection of short stories… [Heighton writes] with a candour and insight that is heartbreaking.” —The Big Issue (U.K.)

“Heighton's prose is cool, reflective, mature and deceptively straightforward, his sense of pace and craft evident on each page.” —Scotland on Sunday

“These sensitive, and thankfully often ironic, stories… are thought-provoking and delicately written.” —The Guardian

“[Heighton writes with] magical understatement… 'Translations of April' is the proper triumph of [his] fictional technique… a hymn to the transfigurative powers of art.” —Independent on Sunday

“'La Rose de l'Erebe' is elegant and complex.” —Le Devoir (trans. from French)