These two novellas are related only in so far as they are based on the same character, Miranda. I heard of Porter from another book I was reading, I am afraid I can’t remember which. But she is pretty amazing.
Her style is very spare and very attenuated, a bit like Hemingway and Faulkner, with whom I read she is often compared. A lot remains unsaid, lurking behind the language and the story.
Pale Horse, Pale Rider is about loss and death; and Old Mortality is about the expectations placed on us by our social milieu. Which is to simplify grossly but, hey, this is just a blog for people interesting in reading.
I enjoyed these books very much. I read them in Venice, too, which only added to the enjoyment. They matched the atmosphere perfectly.