Customer Reviews for

Reasons for and Advantages of Breathing: Stories

Average Rating 3.5
( 10 )
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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 24, 2011

    Interesting take on modern technology

    In these 8 stories, the common theme is how modern life is changing us. Some of us try to stop time, others welcome the change, these stories provide us with different experiences. Well worth the read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 4, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    eBook Story from the Collection

    The NOOKbook is the title story from Peelle's collection. The story is a first-person account of a woman who is dealing with her crumbling marriage and meets a herpetologist on a bus and cultivates a relationship with him and his reptiles and amphibians. The story is a quick read and definitely a worthwhile one.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 12, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    A marvelous collection of eight short stories, written in splendid prose

    Written in splendid prose, and a superb collection of eight short stories, Lydia Peele's debut book, "Reasons for and Advantages of Breathing", is an astonishing book. The cumulative effect of reading these marvelous stories lingers in a reader's mind for a very long time.

    There is a unifying theme, a common thread running through most of these stories: the effect of modern technology on the human psyche, the deleterious effect of human progress on nature, the rapidly dwindling wilderness, the pain and cruelty man inflicts on others and also on animals, and the most alarming phenomenon - the diminishing ability of man to empathize with others. These points meld perfectly in the story I most admired, "The mule killers", about the effect of the advent of tractors not just on the narrator's grandfather's farm, but on the grandfather's mind itself. The narrator describes the heart-rending scene of the mules of the farm carted away in trailers to the slaughterhouse, to be sold as cheap meat for dog food. This story just tugged at my heat and caused me a great deal of pain and anguish. This story won the O Henry Award in 2006.

    "This is not a love story", "Shadow on a weary land", "The still point", and "Sweet hearts of the rodeo" are extraordinarily good. I enjoyed reading them.

    Two of these stories have been featured in the "Best New American Voices", and two others have won Pushcart Prizes also. And all these stories have been published, individually, as e-Books by "Mobypocket".

    I do not wish to compare Lydia Peelle with other short story writers such as Jhumpa Lahiri and Alice Munro because Lydia Peelle has a unique voice and a unique style. Some of the stories are dark and gloomy, and yet the reader is compelled to read on by the sheer power of her lovely prose. Reading this book was a great joy.
    Yesh Prabhu, Plainsboro, NJ

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted December 5, 2009

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