From the Publisher
Praise from fellow writers:
“Her work felt revolutionary when I came to it, and it still does.” —Jhumpa Lahiri
“She is one of the handful of writers, some living, most dead, whom I have in mind when I say that fiction is my religion.” —Jonthan Franzen
“The authority she brings to the page is just lovely.” —Elizabeth Strout
“She’s the most savage writer I’ve ever read, also the most tender, the most honest, the most perceptive.” —Jeffery Eugenides
“Alice Munro can move characters through time in a way that no other writer can.”—Julian Barnes
“She is a short-story writer who…reimagined what a story can do.” —Loorie Moore
“There’s probably no one alive who’s better at the craft of the short story.” —Jim Shepard
“A true master of the form.” —Salman Rushdie
“A wonderful writer.” —Joyce Carol Oates
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Munro's ( The Progress of Love ) unfailing sense of the timeless propels the stories in her seventh book to the point of quiet revelation. Writing often of Canadians in the provinces who look back on years past from the vantage point of middle or old age, she tells of an elderly man attempting a discreet exit from his life; a widow who seeks a better understanding of her late husband in his former Scottish stomping grounds; and a daughter who relates and then recasts a classic tale of female self-denial handed down as an uncomfortable inheritance by her mother. The last, the volume's title story, is an especially insightful work, suggesting both the opposition and communion between art and experience--between a daughter who will write as she likes and a mother whose steely mask forbids her to. It is difficult to do justice to Munro's magical way with characterization or to her unerring control of her own resources: she writes about the forging and dismantling of friendships, marriages, families and solitudes with a trenchant knowledge of life and fiction as conspiring forces of creation. BOMC and QPB alternates. (Mar.)
Munro is an established author, one of the few who have mastered the art of short story writing. This fine collection contains ten stories that are all good to read. Most--but not all--are about the inhabitants of small Canadian towns. The primary characters, mainly women, have diverse relationships with their families and other unusual acquaintances. The plots are sometimes funny, sometimes tragic, but always within the realm of realism. Very seldom does anything occur that seems too ridiculous to actually have happened to somebody one knows. Most readers will find these stories entertaining and often thought-provoking. Recommended for libraries already owning Munro's previous works and also for those that may have missed her in the past. Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 11/15/89.-- Mary Prokop, CEL Regional Lib., Savannah, Ga.
One of the most eloquent and gifted writers of contemporary fiction...A wonderful collection of stories, beautifully written and deeply felt.
-- The New York Times