“Pengereng” is a Belize Kriol word for the noise made when something, especially a metallic object, falls to the floor. Figuratively, it refers to a great disturbance or upheaval. Hence, the title of Ivory Kelly’s new book of short fiction in which the protagonists experience major life upheavals that force them to make extremely tough choices.Set in Belize and the United States, the stories in Pengereng will resonate with readers worldwide as they probe into issues that are both universal and Belize-specific. “Stillborn” questions whether a woman is ever justified in excluding her child’s father from the child’s life and raises the issue of how a child’s life is impacted when the family unit is disrupted. Meanwhile, “Dear Editor,” influenced by the 2009 death of a Mayan baby at the Punta Gorda Hospital in southern Belize, attributes racism as the underlying cause of this heart-breaking tragedy.Kriol activist Silvaana Udz describes Pengereng as a “ground-breaking” publication as it includes the first major work of fiction written entirely in the standard Belize Kriol spelling system.


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