Life Is Short but Wide

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Overview

Beloved writer J. California Cooper has won a legion of loyal fans and much critical acclaim for her powerful storytelling gifts. In language both spare and direct yet wondrously lyrical, LIFE IS SHORT BUT WIDE is an irresistible story of family that proves no matter who you are or what you do, you are never too old to chase your dreams.
Like the small towns J. California Cooper has so vividly portrayed in her previous novels and story collections, Wideland, Oklahoma, is home to...

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New York, NY 2009 Hard cover First edition. MINT-NEW NEVER OPENED New in new dust jacket. MINT CONDITION _ BRAND NEW Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. 336 p. Audience: ... General/trade. Ay. Caramba! We pride ourselves in bringing only the very best to the table! Exceptional Quality! Unbeatable Service! @ Ay Caramba! You will find Rare and unusual books in the very best condition. If we don t have what you re looking for we ll do our best to locate it. All our books are in "MINT" condition unless otherwise noted We ship all our books immediately from our location in Southern California! We specialize in quality, rare and collectible First Editions Read more Show Less

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Life Is Short but Wide

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Overview

Beloved writer J. California Cooper has won a legion of loyal fans and much critical acclaim for her powerful storytelling gifts. In language both spare and direct yet wondrously lyrical, LIFE IS SHORT BUT WIDE is an irresistible story of family that proves no matter who you are or what you do, you are never too old to chase your dreams.
Like the small towns J. California Cooper has so vividly portrayed in her previous novels and story collections, Wideland, Oklahoma, is home to ordinary Americans struggling to raise families, eke out a living, and fulfill their dreams. In the early twentieth century, Irene and Val fall in love in Wideland. While carving out a home for themselves, they also allow neighbors Bertha and Joseph to build a house and live on their land. The next generation brings two girls for Irene and Val, and a daughter for Bertha and Joseph. As the families cope with the hardships that come with changing times and fortunes, and people are born and pass away, the characters learn the importance of living one’s life boldly and squeezing out every possible moment of joy.
Cooper brilliantly captures the cadences of the South and draws a picture of American life at once down-to-earth and heartwarming in this-as her wise narrator will tell you-“strange, sad, kind’a beautiful, life story.” It is a story about love that leads to the ultimate realization that whoever you are, and whatever you do, life is short, but it is also wide.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780385511346
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 3/24/2009
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 5.94 (h) x 1.14 (d)

Meet the Author

J. CALIFORNIA COOPER is the author of four novels, including, most recently, Some People, Some Other Place, and six collections of stories. She was honored as Black Playwright of the Year, and has received the American Book Award, the James Baldwin Writing Award, and the Literary Lion Award from the American Library Association. She lives in Portland, Oregon.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 76 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(35)

4 Star

(13)

3 Star

(14)

2 Star

(6)

1 Star

(8)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 76 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 20, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Page Turner

    This is an excellent book. Cooper remains my favorite author because of her unique storytelling style as well as the wisdom always woven through her stories. She tells the good, bad and ugly about life. Sometimes this means we lose characters that we're pulling for while "watching" the not so nice characters win. Uuugh, but that's life. I sat down on a lazy Saturday intending to simply get started and wound up reading the entire book that day!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 28, 2009

    I love all her work !!!

    Nice and refreshing book to read! Truly a real storyteller she makes you b'live in the human sprit and loving yourself and enjoying the little things life has to offer.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 9, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Good Book But NOT GREAT

    This is a good book but in my opinion not Cooper's greatest work. Near the end of the book, I found the story being dragged on as if Cooper neeeded to achieve 336 pages. There were times that the book seemed disconnected (the whole section on Jehovah's Witness)...Cooper is a great writer and probably could have incorporated these comments in a more creative way.

    With all this said, J. California Cooper can weave a story like no one else. She is creative, comforting and carefree. She still ranks among the best ficition writers in my book.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 27, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Excellent

    J. California Cooper is an original folk story teller that captivates the characters and pulls the reader into the story because often the events can so easily be incorporated in the readers own life. She has a natural act of weaving the story between the different characters with a deep spiritual meaning that becomes apparent by the time you each the ending, sometimes prior. I have admired her work and been very supportive of recommending her book and would love to see Barnes and Noble bring her to the New Jersey area because she is an outstanding writer.
    Simona

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 27, 2009

    Pretty Good Book

    This writer is extremely creative. Nice light book to read. I love J California Cooper.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 20, 2013

    What else is new?

    Her stories are always the best!! Haven't read one that didn't make me lol and cry and wonder. I felt like I was with the characters watching everything unfold

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 13, 2013

    I Love the story and the writer as well....J.C Copper you know h

    I Love the story and the writer as well....J.C Copper you know how to tell a story.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 23, 2013

    Good Read

    Slow start all and all turned out to be a great read God will reveal love to you and his time. He will always bring you back in full form to the person he brought into your life if it's meant to be

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2012

    Like the postal carrier she continues to deliver...

    Great read. Wise and well woven timeless love story about ordinary folk. Speaks to her signature style that I adore so much.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 23, 2011

    Great story

    Thi is a great life story of love for 2 people that spans decades. this book was hard to put down. Loved it!!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 27, 2011

    You won't go wrong with this book

    Well written and tells how love transcends time--A wonderful love story!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 29, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    My Favorite Author

    J Cali tells a story like no other!!!! Her style of writing and story telling gives hope to all women of all walks of life. She takes you through the depths of oppression and moves you right through to the highest peaks of liberation. Her characters have a strong voice that you cant help but to hear. Please experience her writing for your self. You wont be disappointed!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 2, 2011

    a must read

    this is a great book about life, love a great story beautifully written one of my favorites

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  • Posted March 8, 2011

    I recommend this book.

    I enjoyed this book. A complex human intrust story of life's problems.
    Well written and reflective.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 4, 2010

    Disappointing...

    Although, I found the narrator delightful, I could actually visualize her telling the story,the characters lacked substance. They were not completely fleshed out. I found that the religious inferences, at times, seemed forced and took away from the story. As a Witness, myself, Ms. Cooper should recognize that two masters cannot be served...

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 9, 2010

    life is short but wide. Is a really good book.

    Is a really good book. I recommend it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 23, 2010

    Life's many surprises!

    Excellent reading! Good demonstration of what happens when one procrastinate and don't share feelings. Also lessons about pride. Sometimes you miss a lot because of pride.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 19, 2010

    great read

    I loved the story of Irene and Val and there since of commuinty. And After Val passed on she found love from the person she never thought to look at...great book would read it again....

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 11, 2009

    Wonderful book.

    Couldn't put it down. Great read!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 10, 2009

    J. California Cooper-style!

    One of the joys of her writing for me is being able to see myself and people I know in some character in her books. Most of her work grabs at me so much that I don't want to put the book down. This was an enjoyable read while relaxing on vacation, but not as much as some of her other work. I had trouble really connecting with the narrator.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 76 Customer Reviews

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