A collection of short stories from celebrated author William Trevor in which he shines a light on the day-to-day life of Ireland and its citizens
From his debut collection, “The Day We Got Drunk on Cake,” published in 1968, to “Family Sins” (1990), William Trevor has crafted the short story to perfection, giving us brilliant and subtle stories full of the reversals, surprises, and shadowy truths we discover in life itself. To read this volume is not just to encounter an extraordinary literary stylist, but to understand life as surely as though we were looking through the eyes of his protagonists and—deeper still—into their hearts.
William Trevor: The Collected Stories includes the tales from his seven previous books, as well as four stories that have never appeared in book form in America. They depict the comforts and frustrations of life in rural Ireland, the complexities of family relationships, and the elusive grace of love. They portray the almost invisible strands that bind people to each other as well as the chains that imprison them in solitary yearning.
|Publisher:||Penguin Publishing Group|
|Product dimensions:||20.00(w) x 20.00(h) x 20.00(d)|
About the Author
William Trevor was born in Mitchelstown, County Cork, and spent his childhood in provincial Ireland. He studied at Trinity College, Dublin. He is the author of twenty-nine books, including Felicia’s Journey, which won the Whitbread Book of the Year Award and was made into a motion picture, and The Story of Lucy Gault, which was shortlisted for both the Man Booker Prize and the Whitbread Fiction Prize. In 1996 he was the recipient of the Lannan Award for Fiction. In 2001, he won the Irish Times Literature Prize for fiction. Two of his books were chosen by The New York Times as best books of the year, and his short stories appeared regularly in The New Yorker. In 1997, he was named Honorary Commander of the British Empire.
Date of Birth:May 24, 1928
Place of Birth:Mitchelstown, County Cork, Ireland
Education:Trinity College, Dublin, 1950
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
It took me a couple of months to make my way through these 85 stories and it was definitely worth the time I spent with them. Trevor's prose is always simple and clear, yet his range of characters and plots is astonishing because of their superbly captured detail and variety. Most of these stories deal with Irish and English characters, and many swirl around the realities or possibilities of extramarital affairs. 'In Isfahan,' one of Trevor's best stories, a married middle-aged man carries on an impromptu affair with a young woman he meets while in Iran; in 'Lovers of Their Time,' another top-notch story, a married man carries on a long-term affair with a shop girl by meeting her in a hotel¿s second-floor public bathroom. Trevor is also quite adept of presenting the romantic yearnings of women. In 'The Ballroom of Romance,' a country girl's dreams and consequences are highlighted in her trips to the local dance hall; in 'Afternoon Dancing,' a middle-aged married woman dallies with the idea of an affair with her dance partner after the death of her close friend. Like Chekhov, to whom Trevor is often compared, this writer also has an admirable sense of comedy. 'Mulvhill¿s Memorial' finds an unlikely pornographic set-up within an office; 'The Trinity' has a couple booking a vacation to Venice and ending up in Switzerland. Accidents spiral out of control in 'The Penthouse Apartment,' and in 'A Complicated Nature,' a man is forced to help his upstairs neighbor when her suitor unexpectedly dies. Another one of the best stories of this collection is 'Broken Homes,' where an elderly woman suffers the indignities of having her kitchen painted by a team of indifferent youths. Other first-rate stories include 'The Smoke Trees of San Pietro,' where a boy¿s sickness propels his mother into an affair, and 'Death in Jerusalem' where a mother dies while on vacation.
I keep this book in the back of my car. It rests under yellowing newspapers, discarded To Do Lists (rarely looked at or achieved), a Thomas Guide to Los Angeles and a few stray Starbucks coffee containers. Okay, I'm a slob. But the reason William Trevor's stories go with me wherever I go is I never know when I will be overcome with the urge to read his luminous prose. There is no greater writer today. His characters are richly complex. The worlds they inhabit are diverse, shifting and soaked with truth. I hope Mr. Trevor continues to write for many years to come. And I hope one day I might buy him a pint to thank him for the joy he has brought me and thousands others. Bravo.