After Rain: Stories

After Rain: Stories

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by William Trevor
     
 

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After Rain - Twelve remarkable stories by the master storyteller William Trevor 'There is no better short story writer in the English-speaking world' Wall Street Journal In this collection of twelve dazzling, acutely rendered tales, William Trevor plumbs the depths of the human heart. Here we encounter a blind piano tuner whose wonderful memories of his first wife

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Overview

After Rain - Twelve remarkable stories by the master storyteller William Trevor 'There is no better short story writer in the English-speaking world' Wall Street Journal In this collection of twelve dazzling, acutely rendered tales, William Trevor plumbs the depths of the human heart. Here we encounter a blind piano tuner whose wonderful memories of his first wife are cruelly distorted by his second; a woman in a difficult marriage who must choose between her indignant husband and her closest friend; two children, survivors of divorce, who mimic their parents' melodramas; and a heartbroken woman traveling alone in Italy who experiences an epiphany while studying a forgotten artist's Annunciation. Trevor is, in his own words, 'a storyteller. My fiction may, now and again, illuminate aspects of the human condition, but I do not consciously set out to do so.' Conscious or not, he touches us in ways that few writers even dare to try. If you enjoyed The Story of Lucy Gault and Love and Summer, you will love this book. It will also be adored by readers of Colm Toibin, George Saunders and James Joyce. William Trevor was born in Mitchelstown, County Cork. He has written eighteen novels and novellas, and hundreds of short stories, for which he has won a number of prizes including the Hawthornden Prize, the Yorkshire Post Book of the Year Award, the Whitbread Book of the Year Award and the David Cohen Literature Prize in recognition of a lifetime's literary achievement. In 2002 he was knighted for his services to literature. His books in Penguin are: After Rain; A Bit on the Side; Bodily Secrets; Cheating at Canasta; The Children of Dynmouth; The Collected Stories (Volumes One and Two); Death in Summer; Felicia's Journey; Fools of Fortune; The Hill Bachelors; Love and Summer; The Mark-2 Wife; Selected Stories; The Story of Lucy Gault and Two Lives.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
There are few contemporary writers who can match the quiet dignity with which Trevor embues his writing, or his command of the short story form. After last year's remarkable novel, Felicia's Journey, he returns here to more mundane lives. These 12 tales stay well within the bounds of conventional storytelling: there are no fractured narratives or disjointed memories delivered solely for effect. Instead, each of these stories pursues a classic but effective structure: a thinly held equilibrium is disturbed, leading first to a general collapse, then to an emotional plateau in which something vital has changed. In "A Friendship," Francesca, an unhappy housewife, begins an affair with an old acquaintance. The liaison does not lead to the expected dissolution of her marriage but, instead, to a loss of another part of her life. In "The Potato Dealer," an unplanned pregnancy forces a young woman into a marriage of convenience with a middle-aged potato trader. Though never loving, the union achieves a type of friendship; a friendship that is then irrevocably broken by the revelation of secrets. The domestic vein of most of these stories is epitomized by "The Piano Tuner's Wives," in which a second marriage's competition with the first is handled with lyricism and a haunting simplicity, and by "Marrying Damian," in which a couple must struggle to accept their daughter's love affair with their friend, a middle-aged roustabout. Politics, too, finds its way into current lives. In "Lost Ground," the collection's longest tale, the troubles in Northern Ireland provide the impetus for a young boy's tragic death. Each of these stories is rendered with Trevor's characteristic economy. The deft handling of information, as well as the exquisite sense of control, again show Trevor as a brilliant master of his craft. (Oct.)
Library Journal
In the title story of this collection, Trevor says, "It was after rain that the angel came: those first cool moments were a chosen time." Each of these 12 stories have a chosen time. First, characters are introduceda blind piano tuner and his manipulative second wife, a gay man and the parents he resents, two children scarred by divorceand the rain in their relationships revealed. Then there is a moment of understanding. As in Trevor's latest (Felicia's Journey, LJ 12/94)a best seller that enhanced his oeuvre of 22 books, many of them prize winnerstension and the revelations that come with it are skillfully brought to the reader's attention. Some of these stories have been previously published in magazines, but all of them are well constructed and offer the reader insights into the nature of conflict and resolution. Essential for larger literary collections.Joshua Cohen, Mid-Hudson Lib. Sys., Poughkeepsie, N.Y.
The New Yorker
Trevor is probably the greatest living writer of short stories in the English language.
The Boston Globe
One of the finest writers now at work in our language...No writer practicing the form today moves with nimbler assurance than Trevor across such an impressive gamut of social and emotional connections.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780140258349
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
10/28/1997
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
224
Sales rank:
622,360
Product dimensions:
5.10(w) x 7.76(h) x 0.57(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

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