Start reading Binocular Vision: New & Selected Stories on the free Kindle Reading App or on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Enter a promotion code
or gift card
 
 
 

Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Color:
Image not available

To view this video download Flash Player

 

Binocular Vision: New & Selected Stories [Kindle Edition]

Edith Pearlman , Ann Patchett
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (73 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $18.95
Kindle Price: $9.99
You Save: $8.96 (47%)

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition $9.99  
Hardcover --  
Paperback $15.13  
Kindle Delivers
Kindle Delivers
Subscribe to the Kindle Delivers monthly e-mail to find out about each month's Kindle book deals, new releases, editors' picks and more. Learn more (U.S. customers only)

Book Description

In this sumptuous offering, one of our premier storytellers provides a feast for fiction aficionados. Spanning four decades and three prize-winning collections, these twenty-one classic selected stories and thirteen scintillating new ones take us around the world, from Jerusalem to Central America, from tsarist Russia to London during the Blitz, from central Europe to Manhattan, and from the Maine coast to Godolphin, Massachusetts, a fictional suburb of Boston. These charged locales, and the lives of the endlessly varied characters within them, are evoked with a tenderness and incisiveness found in only our most observant seers.

No matter the situation in which her characters find themselves—an unforeseen love affair between adolescent cousins, a lifetime of memories unearthed by an elderly couple’s decision to shoplift, the deathbed secret of a young girl’s forbidden forest tryst with the tsar, the danger that befalls a wealthy couple’s child in a European inn of misfits—Edith Pearlman conveys their experience with wit and aplomb, with relentless but clear-eyed optimism, and with a supple prose that reminds us, sentence by sentence, page by page, of the gifts our greatest verbal innovators can bestow.


From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. A finely tuned collection by writer's writer Pearlman combines the best of previous collections (How to Fall; etc.) with austere, polished new work. Pearlman's characters for the most part are stiff-upper-lipped Northeasterners who take what comes and don't grumble: in "The Noncombatant," Richard, a 49-year-old doctor suffering gravely from cancer during the tail end of WWII, rages quietly in his small Cape Cod town as celebrations erupt and memories of the wasted lives of the dead are swept away. A fictional Godolphin, Mass., is the setting for many of the stories, such as "Rules," in which the well-meaning staff at a soup kitchen try not to pry into the lives of the "cheats and crazies, drunks and dealers" who frequent the place. "Hanging Fire" is a perfectly crafted story about a 21-year-old college graduate, Nancy, on the cusp of embarking on life and certain only of her obligation to herself. The tale of retired gastroenterologist Cornelia Fitch in "Self-Reliance" reads like the fulfillment of Nancy's own self-determined trajectory: after a successful career, she determines how she wants to leave this life: with dignity and a wink. This should win new converts for Pearlman. (Jan.)
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. A finely tuned collection by writer's writer Pearlman combines the best of previous collections (How to Fall; etc.) with austere, polished new work. Pearlman's characters for the most part are stiff-upper-lipped Northeasterners who take what comes and don't grumble: in "The Noncombatant," Richard, a 49-year-old doctor suffering gravely from cancer during the tail end of WWII, rages quietly in his small Cape Cod town as celebrations erupt and memories of the wasted lives of the dead are swept away. A fictional Godolphin, Mass., is the setting for many of the stories, such as "Rules," in which the well-meaning staff at a soup kitchen try not to pry into the lives of the "cheats and crazies, drunks and dealers" who frequent the place. "Hanging Fire" is a perfectly crafted story about a 21-year-old college graduate, Nancy, on the cusp of embarking on life and certain only of her obligation to herself. The tale of retired gastroenterologist Cornelia Fitch in "Self-Reliance" reads like the fulfillment of Nancy's own self-determined trajectory: after a successful career, she determines how she wants to leave this life: with dignity and a wink. This should win new converts for Pearlman. (Jan.)
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* There is a vast difference between reading Pearlman’s stories in a magazine or anthology and reading this collection. In settings ranging from unnamed South American countries to the Boston suburbs, from the current day to the last century (e.g., the Russian Revolution, WWII), depictions of people, places, and manners are so perfect that the stories become totally immersive. The characters, always interesting, are limned just as strongly whether female or male, young or old. The Latin American minister of health (called the Cow by her enemies) in “Vaquita” and the old man studying Japanese at age 75 in “Relic and Type” both linger in memory long after the book is closed. Stylistically, the stories are complex in their use of language, with technique incorporated seamlessly to engage and provoke readers. Many describe the lives of Jews who have integrated into the modern world and who examine the resonance of Judaism in their lives. The stories’ disparate lengths are no impediment to these qualities. The shorter “The Story” is just as involving as the longer “Binocular Vision.” Give this wonderful collection to fans of such classic short story writers as Andre Dubus and Alice Munro and novelists like Nicole Krauss. They will thank you. --Ellen Loughran

Product Details

  • File Size: 1151 KB
  • Print Length: 397 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0982338295
  • Publisher: Lookout Books (January 11, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004JF4H1K
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #195,822 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
58 of 64 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Masterpiece October 21, 2011
By aidel
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
My first exposure to the incredibly brilliant Edith Pearlman came in the form of her collection Binocular Vision. I want very much to write a helpful, detailed review but honestly I am nearly speechless in the face of such perfection. This writer sees the world with unfettered, original eyes. Her prose is not only flawless but elegant. Somehow, she has the chutzpah to capture the truth of how unglamorous life really is, while surprises -- so original that your heart skips a beat -- wait on every page. Pearlman is incredibly adept at mastering multiple points of view. Many good writers may do one thing very well and stick to their schtick and write lots of perfectly good stories or novels. Part of Pearlman's genius is that she is as comfortable as an eleven year old as she is at forty, or seventy, or whatever perspective unfolds in the story. She is able to both give the reader a real sense of the complexity of a situation while keeping it simple. When you finish reading (and re-reading) this book, you will put it on your shelf next to Chekhov. In fact, she is better than Chekhov. Nothing I can say will adequately prepare you for the genius of Edith Pearlman. So stop wasting your time on reviews, buy the book, and when it comes, call in sick to work and read. Every story will give you the pleasure of discovering something true. Edith Pearlman, thank you.
Was this review helpful to you?
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Breathtaking and Wonderful Short Fiction ! November 6, 2011
Format:Paperback
I am an avid short fiction reader and subscribe to Paris Review and other literary periodicals, so I am surprised that I have not run across more of her stories in the past. This is a wonderful collection to be nominated for a National Book Award, and these are some of the best short stories from a modern English speaking author in a few years. Her writing is so fluid and wonderful. She enlightens the reader, guides the reader into the story; never seems to thrust the story upon the reader or push the reader. She never writes as if preaching or teaching some lesson, but there are lessons to be learned.

The stories are amazing and fluid, and the reader is quickly, nay instantly taken into the world of the story. I fell in love with characters in moments, which is rare indeed for a short story. I particularly enjoyed 'The Noncombatant'. Though I was hooked with the very first story in the collection: 'Inbound'.

*** All you have to do is read "Tess" and you will be unable to resist reading more of this wonderful work. ***

Not since J.D. Salinger have I found a collection of short fiction this utterly engaging, reflective, and rewarding. I look forward to more of her work in the future. She would have my nod for National Book Award for sure!

Update: Upon reading more about this author I discovered that she has won O. Henry awards, a Pushcart prize, that she is older than I thought (judging by her writing style that is), she has some previous works, and also that she has had stories appear in many periodicals, including Ploughshares. I look forward to reading more of her work.

Update: Pearlman won the National Book Critics Circle Award for fiction. You can Google NY Times Pearlman Award for more on the story. I for one am very pleased with her award, and I still consider this the best of the National Book Award Nominees for 2011.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
57 of 67 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars each story is a life on the page March 28, 2011
Format:Paperback
I have not read all of the stories yet. I am not reading in order. Alongside other reading I am engaged in, every day I open Binocular Vision randomly, and that is the story I read that day. It takes an act of will to keep it to just one. I have probably read 20 stories (a little more than half) and wish there were hundreds still to read. Each one is a life on the page. They are gems, to describe them using an overused and unoriginal word. But gems they are, in 8 or 10 or 15 pages. In each story more than one time, I am stopped cold in my reading. I have to write sentences in my book journal so I can have those amazing sentences to read again sometime. How did I never discover Pearlman before the publication of this book? Well, now I know who she is and what she can do.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
36 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must-Read February 11, 2011
Format:Paperback
One of two things has to be true of Edith Pearlman. Either she has an uncanny breadth of knowledge, or else she has an uncannily adept imagination. On page after page, she takes your breath away. If the juries know diamond from cubic zirconium, this book will surely be under consideration for all the major annual awards.

Edith Pearlman, thank you.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well-written and distinctive short stories June 6, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I've always loved short stories, ranging from horror, science fiction,
to classics like de Maupassant and O'Henry. A great short story
gives you an entire world and entire people in twenty pages or
less. While these stories vary in many ways, from settings in Eastern
Europe, Central America, to suburban Boston, with central characters
ranging from children, teenagers, young men and women, to the old and
dying, the author's confident, almost-gentle prose gives them a
similarity of tone that makes reading them all at once a bit
difficult. I needed to read them all in just a few days because it's
a selection for my book club. This made them blend together, which I
think was unfortunate. Most of the stories have Jewish
cultural references, where family history and assimilation or
secularization are issues. The strengths and weaknesses of the
connections between people are also a recurring theme. The prose is
beautifully crafted yet rarely calls attention to itself.

I recommend these stories, but suggest not reading them all at once,
as I did, but savoring them one at a time, to bring out their distinct
flavors.
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Most interesting. stories.
Ms. Pearlman has a marvelous imagination with which she contrives such interesting and stories. This is the best short story book I've read.
Published 20 days ago by Peter Siegel
5.0 out of 5 stars Gems
Utter gems! I don't normally read short stories. And I thought Patchett's review was over the top. Now I agree with her!
Published 3 months ago by nancy harrison
5.0 out of 5 stars Biggest surprise in a long time!
While I am an avid reader I had never heard of Edith Pearlman. Since I'm not a big fan of short stories that may explain it. Read more
Published 3 months ago by jean lover
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it!
I must thank a friend for recommending Pearlman to me. These stories are great! Funny, witty, different, some of them have a really good twist ... Read more
Published 3 months ago by il-clareazz
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovers of Joyce Carol Oats and Alice Munro Take Note
Lovers of short stories rejoice and read these.

Wow these are good. A master of the short form who is relatively unknown but brilliant, Edith Pearlman builds big stories... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Kingsley Aldershot
5.0 out of 5 stars Moving, delightful and unique characters in intriguing, brilliantly...
I love these stories and anyone who likes short fiction will love them as well. Edith Pearlman is a master of the genre. I am delighted to have discovered her work.
Published 3 months ago by Emily Brawley
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding short story collection
Short stories of exceptional range and focus, written with flair and style and grace; will provide food for thought as well as pleasure.
Published 6 months ago by Nancy E. Talburt
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb use of English!
This is an exceptional author and book. The use of English is outstanding thus rendering this book attractive to people who enjoy the language well used. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Chris
3.0 out of 5 stars It's in the details
My opinion about this volume is divided. I can't quite decide if I really liked it. Some stories worked for me, while I felt let down by some of them. Read more
Published 9 months ago by J. Ang
5.0 out of 5 stars Masterful
Edith Pearlman is a master of the short story. Within a few sentences the reader is truly in the place, gets a true feeling for the characters and enters into the world of the... Read more
Published 9 months ago by Helene L. Dow
Search Customer Reviews
Search these reviews only

More About the Author

Edith Pearlman is the recipient of the 2011 PEN/Malamud Award for excellence in the art of short fiction. Her most recent collection, Binocular Vision: New & Selected Stories, won the 2011 National Book Critics Circle Award for fiction, the Julia Ward Howe Prize, and the Edward Lewis Wallant Award, and was named ForeWord Book of the Year and a finalist for the National Book Award, the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, and The Story Prize. She has published more than 250 works in national magazines and anthologies, including Best American Short Stories, The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories, New Stories from the South, and The Pushcart Prize, and three previous story collections: Vaquita, winner of the Drue Heinz Prize for Literature, Love Among the Greats, winner of the Spokane Fiction Award, and How to Fall, winner of the Mary McCarthy Prize. She lives in Brookline, Massachusetts.

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?



Forums

There are no discussions about this product yet.
Be the first to discuss this product with the community.
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 


Look for Similar Items by Category