peteg's blog - noise - books - 2013 04 19 AliceMunro HateshipFriendshipCourtshipLoveshipMarriage

Alice Munro: Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage

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A reviewer at the New York Times said:

That Alice Munro, now 81, is one of the great short story writers not just of our time but of any time ought to go without saying by now.

Far be it for me to argue with that. I extracted this 2001 assemblage of short stories from the UNSW Library a couple of weekends ago. All are well-constructed and written, though some extraneous detail occasionally detracts from her central points. Often she seems to be laying a platform for a pointed observation; fifty pages of setup for just two paragraphs. Her stories are about the kinds of traditional lives that I have successfully avoided up to now: everyone gets married, some get divorced, everyone has (or will have) kids, parents are careless, you can't go home again.

I might track down more of her stuff once I'm further through my current stack.

Coda: later (2013-06-10) I read Christian Lorentzen's snark in the London Review of Books.