The St. Lawrence Book Award Winner


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A Catalogue of Everything in the World

Publication Date: May 2011


A Catalogue of Everything in the World, winner of the 2008 St. Lawrence Book Award, is an allegory of identity: characters’ entwined experiences share an undercurrent of uncertainty, of self-exploration; a sentiment that Renfro adeptly mirrors with the geographical particularities of Nebraska, a place at once undefined and yet subtly representative of the world’s infinite catalogued people and circumstances. It’s this dichotomy of life and understanding-an elderly widow grappling with time; a young woman trying to tame a confusing, inchoate love; a displaced Californian searching for belonging-that Renfro weaves so beautifully throughout these stories, each more incisive and imaginative than the last.


“A Catalogue of Everything in the World is truly that-a vividly illustrating, achingly honest, and stunningly lyrical examination of everything in these characters’ hearts, wherever they may have landed. Renfro’s people are hurt, and tenderhearted, and still they try to figure out their worlds. I couldn’t look away, and I carried them with me for some time.”

-Susan Straight

These lovely, evocative Nebraska Stories in A Catalogue of Everything in the World by Yelizaveta P. Renfro are not only authentic to the lyricism and vastness of the region but so true and dignifying of human relationships and struggles in this very fine and wise collection.”

-Susan Richards Shreve

Renfro’s firm grasp of language and inventive use of space contributes enormously to the success of the fiction.”

-Alan Cheuse

About the Author

Yelizaveta Renfro

Yelizaveta P. Renfro is the author of a collection of short stories, A Catalogue of Everything in the World, winner of the St. Lawrence Book Award. Her fiction and nonfiction have appeared in Glimmer Train Stories, North American Review, Colorado Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, South Dakota Review, Witness, Reader’s Digest, Blue Mesa Review, Fourth River, Bayou Magazine, Untamed Ink, So to Speak, and the anthologies A Stranger Among Us: Stories of Cross Cultural Collision and Connection (OV Books, 2008) and Commutability: Stories about the Journey from Here to There (Main Street Rag, 2010). She holds an MFA from George Mason University and a Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska. Born in the former Soviet Union, she has lived in California, Virginia, Nebraska, and Connecticut.

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