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Best Books of 2011, 'San Francisco Chronicle' 'The Millions' ' A Year in Reading pickEleven women confront dramas both everyday and outlandish in Caitlin Horrocks' 'This Is Not Your City'. In stories as darkly comic as they are unflinching, people isolated by geography, emotion, or circumstance cut imperfect paths to peace--they have no other choice. A Russian mail-order bride in Finland is rendered silent by her dislocation and loss of language, the mother of a severely disabled boywrites him postcards he'll never read on a cruise ship held hostage by pirates, and an Iowa actuary wanders among the reincarnations of those she's known in her 127 lives. Horrocks' women find no simple escapes, and their acts of faith and acts of imagination in making do are as shrewd as they are surprising.