The Cost of Lunch, Etc.: Short Stories

Overview

In this collection of short stories, bestselling author Marge Piercy brings us glimpses into the lives of everyday women moving through and making sense of their daily internal and external worlds. Keeping to the engaging, accessible language of Piercy’s novels, the collection spans decades of her writing along with a range of locations, ages, and emotional states of her protagonists. From the first-person account of hoarding and a girl’s narrative of sexual and spiritual discovery to the recounting of a past ...

See more details below
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (21) from $10.00   
  • New (14) from $12.54   
  • Used (7) from $10.00   

Overview

In this collection of short stories, bestselling author Marge Piercy brings us glimpses into the lives of everyday women moving through and making sense of their daily internal and external worlds. Keeping to the engaging, accessible language of Piercy’s novels, the collection spans decades of her writing along with a range of locations, ages, and emotional states of her protagonists. From the first-person account of hoarding and a girl’s narrative of sexual and spiritual discovery to the recounting of a past love affair, each story is a tangible, vivid snapshot in a varied and subtly curated gallery of work. Whether grappling with death, familial relationships, friendship, sex, illness, or religion, Piercy’s writing is as passionate, lucid, insightful, and thoughtfully alive as ever.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
05/19/2014
With uncompromising emotional intensity, Piercy (Gone to Soldiers), the author of 17 novels, 17 volumes of poetry, and a memoir, captures the complex female experience in her debut short story collection. From the title story featuring an aspiring female poet who weighs the price of sex and poetry to a student’s disenchantment with her high school teacher (“Somebody Who Understands You”), Piercy maps the interior lives of women across generations, paying special attention to the socio-politcal environment that affects them. Her writing maintains a skillful detachment, limning moments of isolation between characters with palpable unease: “He is gentle. If he does not touch her with passion, neither does he hurt her. That is very important, not to be hurt.” Piercy, whose work is inseparable from her feminist politics, includes many characters (seven of whom are writers) who are suggestively autobiographical in their histories and musings, including a girl dying of rheumetic fever (“She’s Dying, He Said”), an anti–Vietnam War activist shuttling men to the Canadian border (“The Border”). Piercy is best at unraveling what she creates—turning an answer into a question in “Do You Love Me?,” and a soliloquy punctuated by silence in “Little Sister, Cat and Mouse.” Powerful in scope, the collection feels driven by an idea rather than a story, demonstrating Pierce’s understanding of how social constructs evolve in deeply personal ways. (July)
From the Publisher
“The author displays an old-fashioned narrative drive and a set of well-realized characters permitted to lead their own believably odd lives.”  —Thomas Mallon, Newsday
"Piercy’s perceptiveness exposes our raw edges and vulnerability, but her characters never affect to be better than we are, only complicit with us in their desire to somehow get on with things." —Barbara Clark, the Barnstable Patriot
"The book’s paragraphs are concise and poetic. Each sentence is purposeful, enhancing the setting and action. If Piercy’s characters make you weep, it’s because they’re so real." —George Longenecker, Rain Taxi

“This reviewer knows no other writer with Piercy’s gifts for tracing the emotional route that two people take to a double bed, and the mental games and gambits each transacts there.”  —Ron Grossman, Chicago Tribune

“Marge Piercy is not just an author, she’s a cultural touchstone. Few writers in modern memory have sustained her passion, and skill, for creating stories of consequence.”  —Boston Globe

“What Piercy has that Danielle Steel, for example, does not is an ability to capture life’s complex texture, to chart shifting relationships and evolving consciousness within the context of political and economic realities she delineates with mordant matter-of-factness." —Wendy Smith, Chicago Sun-Times

“As always, Piercy writes with high intelligence, love for the world, ethical passion, and innate feminism.”  —Adrienne Rich, feminist and author, A Change of World

"With uncompromising emotional intensity, Piercy captures the complex female experience in her debut short story collection. Powerful in scope, the collection feels driven by an idea rather than a story, demonstrating Pierce’s understanding of how social constructs evolve in deeply personal ways." —Publishers Weekly

"Piercy homes in on her characters, mixing just the right amount of humor into her always insightful take on imperfect human relationships, in their many guises." —Deborah Donovan, Booklist

"Piercy's debut short-story collection heralds the beloved feminist writer's return to fiction after a long hiatus. The stories, written in the fiercely honest style of her novels, follows everyday women attempting to make sense of their world." —Ms. Magazine

"Though stuffed with heavy topics, The Cost of Lunch, Etc. is the perfect poolside literary pick." —glo-mag.com

"Many of the stories are funny, a few shocking, all are interesting and incredibly well-told. For a journey into the feminine psyche it is unparalleled." —Sally Hughes, welovethisbook.com

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781604864960
  • Publisher: PM Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/2014
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 1,008,511
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 8.10 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Marge Piercy is the author of 17 novels, including the national bestsellers Braided Lives, Gone to Soldiers, and Woman on the Edge of Time; 17 volumes of poetry; and a critically acclaimed memoir, Sleeping with Cats. She has been the recipient of four honorary doctorates and has been a key player in many of the major progressive political battles, including the anti–Vietnam War and the women’s movements, and more recently an active participant in the resistance to the war in Iraq. She lives in Wellfleet, Massachusetts.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)