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Black Dahlia & White Rose [NOOK Book]

Overview

A wildly inventive new collection ofstories by Joyce Carol Oates that chartsthe surprising ways in which the worldwe think we know can unexpectedlyreveal its darker contours

The New York Times has hailed Joyce Carol Oates as "adangerous writer in the best sense of the word, one whotakes risks almost obsessively with energy and relish."Black Dahlia & White Rose, a collection of eleven previouslyuncollected stories, showcases the keen rewards ofOates's relentless brio and ...

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Black Dahlia & White Rose

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Overview

A wildly inventive new collection ofstories by Joyce Carol Oates that chartsthe surprising ways in which the worldwe think we know can unexpectedlyreveal its darker contours

The New York Times has hailed Joyce Carol Oates as "adangerous writer in the best sense of the word, one whotakes risks almost obsessively with energy and relish."Black Dahlia & White Rose, a collection of eleven previouslyuncollected stories, showcases the keen rewards ofOates's relentless brio and invention. In one beautifullyhoned story after another, Oates explores the menace thatlurks at the edges of and intrudes upon even the seeminglysafest of lives—and maps with rare emotional acuity thetransformational cost of such intrusions.

Unafraid to venture into no-man's-lands both real andsurreal, Oates takes readers deep into dangerous territory,from a maximum-security prison—vividly delineatingthe heartbreaking and unexpected atmosphere of such aninstitution—to the inner landscapes of two beautiful andmysteriously doomed young women in 1940s Los Angeles:Elizabeth Short, otherwise known as the Black Dahlia,victim of a long-unsolved and particularly brutal murder,and her roommate Norma Jeane Baker, soon to becomeMarilyn Monroe. Whether exploring the psychologicalcompulsion of the wife of a well-to-do businessman whois ravished by, and elopes with, a lover who is not what heseems or the uneasily duplicitous relationships betweenyoung women and their parents, Black Dahlia & White Roseexplores the compelling intertwining of dread and desire,the psychic pull and trauma of domestic life, and resonatesat every turn with Oates's mordant humor and hertrenchant observation.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The new short story collection from the prolific Oates (after the novel Two or Three Things I Forgot to Tell You) contains sinister and charged moments tempered by humor and masterful storytelling. The title tale blends fact and fiction and narrates the intertwining lives of two young women in 1940s Hollywood, roommates whose lives diverge as one becomes an internationally acclaimed actress (Marilyn Monroe), and the other (Elizabeth Short) the victim of a gruesome, unsolved murder case. In "Deceit," a woman must face school authorities to explain the fresh bruises on her daughter's body, and in "Run Kiss Daddy," a man is given a second chance at life with a "beautiful new family small and vulnerable as a mouse cupped trembling in the hand," but is confronted by old ghosts when he takes them to a favorite vacation spot and unearths something morbid. Unsettling, potent, and suspenseful, these well-crafted and haunting stories attest to Oates' superior imagination and mastery of the craft, and provide a welcome addition to her oeuvre. (Sept.)
Booklist
“[A] masterfully honed collection of dark tales… With precision and force, the ever-mesmerizing Oates rips open the scrim of ordinariness to expose the chaos that undermines every human notion of control, reason, and sanctuary.”
Library Journal
Deluxe author Oates offers a collection of 11 previously uncollected stories, including a title piece that tracks the friendship between Elizabeth Short, famously known as the Black Dahlia, the victim of a markedly brutal murder in 1940s Los Angeles that remains unsolved, and her roommate, Norma Jeane Baker—who of course became Marilyn Monroe. The 25,000-copy first printing seems a bit low.
Kirkus Reviews
Another gallery of grotesquerie from the staggeringly prolific Oates. This latest collection of Oates' previously published short stories (the sheer range of venues, from Playboy to Ellery Queen, The New Yorker to video game-inspired e-fiction is an indication of her vast reach) showcases her talent for imbuing mundane events with menace and the kind of irony that springs from narrow brushes with disaster. Thus, in the title story, the depraved serial killer of a Hollywood pinup model known as Black Dahlia could, but for circumstance, just as easily have targeted the starlet who would become Marilyn Monroe. Protagonists are drawn, with equal authority, from the underclass and the self-satisfied professional class. In "I.D.," a pre-adolescent whose single mother has left her alone for days desperately clings to normalcy even as she's being called out of class, possibly to identify her mother's body. In two stories, "Roma!" and "Spotted Hyenas: A Romance," middle-aged women married to prominent, uncommunicative men act out in diverse ways, from a frightening foray down Rome's back alleys to a walk on the wild side as a were-hyena. ("A Brutal Murder in a Public Place" is a more contrived attempt at human/animal identification.) Narrators can be so subtly unreliable as to force readers to question their own perceptions. In "Deceit," a mother summoned to discuss her child's possible abuse may be the perpetrator--her memory has been ravaged by anti-anxiety meds. The divorced father in "Run Kiss Daddy," attempting to start again with a new family in a favorite vacation spot, uncovers evidence of a long-ago crime that could be his own. A young woman who finds a wallet on a train injects herself capriciously and dangerously into a family of strangers. The linked stories "San Quentin" and "Anniversary" cover the excruciating discomfort--and unmistakable voyeurism--of well-meaning individuals teaching in maximum security prisons. Although her material can be macabre, mawkish and deeply unsettling, Oates' hypnotic prose ensures that readers will be unable to look away.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062195715
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/11/2012
  • Sold by: HARPERCOLLINS
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 147,205
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Joyce Carol Oates is a recipient of the National Medal of Humanities, the National Book Critics Circle Ivan Sandrof Lifetime Achievement Award, the National Book Award, and the PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in Short Fiction, and has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. She has written some of the most enduring fiction of our time, including We Were the Mulvaneys; Blonde, which was nominated for the National Book Award; and the New York Times bestseller The Accursed. She is the Roger S. Berlind Distinguished Professor of the Humanities at Princeton University and has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters since 1978.

Biography

Joyce Carol Oates is one of the most influential and important storytellers in the literary world. She has often used her supreme narrative skills to examine the dark side of middle-class Americana, and her oeuvre includes some of the finest examples of modern essays, plays, criticism, and fiction from a vast array of genres. She is still publishing with a speed and consistency of quality nearly unheard of in contemporary literature.

A born storyteller, Oates has been spinning yarns since she was a little girl too young to even write. Instead, she would communicate her stories through drawings and paintings. When she received her very first typewriter at the age of 14, her creative floodgates opened with a torrent. She says she wrote "novel after novel" throughout high school and college -- a prolificacy that has continued unabated throughout a professional career that began in 1963 with her first short story collection, By the North Gate.

Oates's breakthrough occurred in 1969 with the publication of them, a National Book Award winner that established her as a force to be reckoned with. Since that auspicious beginning, she has been nominated for nearly every major literary honor -- from the PEN/Faulkner Award to the Pulitzer Prize -- and her fiction turns up with regularity on The New York Times annual list of Notable Books.

On average Oates publishes at least one novel, essay anthology, or story collection a year (during the 1970s, she produced at the astonishing rate of two or three books a year!). And although her fiction often exposes the darker side of America's brightest facades – familial unrest, sexual violence, the death of innocence – she has also made successful forays into Gothic novels, suspense, fantasy, and children's literature. As novelist John Barth once remarked, "Joyce Carol Oates writes all over the aesthetical map."

Where she finds the time for it no one knows, but Oates manages to combine her ambitious, prolific writing career with teaching: first at the University of Windsor in Canada, then (from 1978 on), at Princeton University in New Jersey. For all her success and fame, her daily routine of teaching and writing has changed very little, and her commitment to literature as a transcendent human activity remains steadfast.

Good To Know

When not writing, Oates likes to take in a fight. "Boxing is a celebration of the lost religion of masculinity all the more trenchant for its being lost," she says in highbrow fashion of the lowbrow sport.

Oates's Black Water, which is a thinly veiled account of Ted Kennedy's car crash in Chappaquiddick, was produced as an opera in the 1990s.

In 2001, Oprah Winfrey selected Oates's novel We Were the Mulvaneys for her Book Club.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Rosamond Smith
    2. Hometown:
      Princeton, New Jersey
    1. Date of Birth:
      June 16, 1938
    2. Place of Birth:
      Lockport, New York
    1. Education:
      B.A., Syracuse University, 1960; M.A., University of Wisconsin, 1961

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 11 )
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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 14, 2012

    Black Dalia & White Roses is an intriguing collection that n

    Black Dalia & White Roses is an intriguing collection that not only tells stories, but make us ponder them and hold our breaths as we turn every page. Boundaries are made invisible, ideas are tested, stereotypes are rendered meaningless and the wideness of man's soul is revealed. A friend suggested I read this story and The Shades of Fire; and henceforth, I will start taking his choices seriously, especially of short stories.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 21, 2012

    Nightwing

    She ran to him. "I thought I lost you."

    1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 1, 2014

    Pokemon professors lab

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2013

    Korbin's House

    A house with a nice fireplace, with a table that has a remote control boat inside of it. The remote control is on the loveseat. A sixty inch flatscreen TV, some stuff placed around for decor.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2012

    0 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 7, 2012

    Pearlsong

    Can i b ur mate

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 8, 2012

    Mdtd

    Fd

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 3, 2012

    Echosong

    A pretty, slender, pure white she-cat with brilliant blue eyes pads in. "I'd like to be your mate" she purred "I'm not in a clan though'"

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 4, 2012

    Icefeaher

    Lkay

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 3, 2012

    Time that come to closing

    A slender solid white and mouse brown she padded in, her spring green eyes shining

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 3, 2012

    Sunray

    Sunray coughed. "Where is this clan?" She mewed softly. "I would like to start over. My 4 kits are dead. Dead and lost."

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