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Glory Goes and Gets Some: Stories Paperback – October 5, 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Picador; First Edition edition (October 5, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312282516
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312282516
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #577,553 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

An intense, edgy, boldly candid and irrepressibly sardonic voice drives the 21 interlinked stories in this collection, mainly narrated by the eponymous Gloria Bronski. Exiled from Manhattan to a recovery community in Minnesota, Glory minces no words in confessing that she is a former drug addict and alcoholic. She's also HIV positive (from a liaison with a Puerto Rican air-conditioner repairman), chronically depressed, and aching for sex, love and connection. The self-described "Jewish child of professional intellectuals," she announces her obsessive neediness for approval ("my disgusting need to be liked")A especially by men. Glory is one of those characters who grab hold of your elbow and pour out their heart in nonstop talk. Her monologues pulse with irony and black humor; constantly cracking wise, she betrays her vulnerability only obliquely. Time and again, Glory's self-destructive behaviorAin East Coast private schools, from which she is expelled, and in the streets and bedrooms of seamy New York neighborhoodsAtestifies to her paradoxical temptation to act badly, even when she's close to rock-bottom. Perversely, she rebuffs her family's love and concernAbut not their money, which always rescues her. In the story "The Bride," she admits that "males have always had incredible power over me.... From nursery school on, I craved their love and approval in the way I would later come to crave alcohol, cocaine, and opiates." But after brief spurts of chemically induced euphoria, all she has earned is a lifetime of sadness. As she progresses through Minnesota's treatment centers, however, Glory does achieve recovery, and the tender, burgeoning possibility of a hopeful life. Carter's stories are best when Glory's voice has center stage; the several third-person narratives lack the ring of authority. But her prose is everywhere supple and compelling, and this collection announces her as a brave new talent. (Sept.) FYI: Carter's literary credentials are impressive; she is the daughter of writer Anne Roiphe and the sister of Katie Roiphe.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Library Journal

Addiction, AIDS, rehabDsounds grim. However, Carter rises above the subject matter and writes in a wholly original voice that is equally irreverent, moving, sardonic, and sad. In this series of linked stories, some of which were originally published in The New Yorker, the author pieces together the chapters of her heroine's life, from Glory's childhood to her stay in treatment centers to her brief period of happiness. In one of the stories, Glory answers the question, "I'm HIV-positive, who will have sex with me?" by placing a personal ad in a magazine called Positive People. Glory knows her weaknesses and is frank and open about her bad decisions: "From nursery school on, I craved [men's] love and approval in the way I would later come to crave alcohol, cocaine and opiates." Carter shows what it is like to live the life of a knowing yet troubled woman today without passing judgment on her character. All public libraries should "go and get some."DYvette Olson, City University Lib., Renton, WA
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Customer Reviews

Other stories not so much.
Tim Lieder
I loved every minute of this book, and can't wait to see more from Ms. Carter.
Deanna Zandt
The voice throughout is unrelenting in its honesty.
ellen cooney

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 19, 2000
Format: Hardcover
These funny, wise, irreverent, at times brutal, always insightful stories are an antidote to the light and fluffy trend of single-girl-looking-for-love-in-urban-America stories. Instead, Emily Carter gives us Glory B., a rich girl fallen from a life of privelege in Manhattan, journeying through the dark night of drugs, alcohol, HIV, and addiction, to emerge in passive/aggressive Minnesota, where all the kids are above average. Carter's fluid sentences and ironic perspective are reason enough to read this captivating book. Glory is a hip and trendy New Yorker transplanted by fate and failure to the midwest, where she discovers that there IS life after death and where she falls in love with the people there for all the right reasons.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By ellen cooney on October 2, 2000
Format: Hardcover
The opposite of "self-destructive" is "I want to live," and that is what the stories in "Glory" are all about about. Some of the pieces are fragmented, like shattered glass--and in the powerful voice of Emily Carter, you can hear the sound of breakage. The stories are about the will to not only stay alive, but to "get some," and the "some" is not merely sex or fulfulling physical needs. The "some" is Life itself. The glimpses of a woman defiantly striking out on her own to get off drugs are unforgettable. So what's it like anyway to come from a background of comfort and culture and end up HIV positive and a drug addict? This is what it's like. Emily Carter has created many, many brilliantly illuminated bits and pieces of what's essentially a survivor's story. Everyone will have favorite bits--mine is the nun who stole Jesus and the two ex-lovers who go on and on about a war movie, to find they were talking about the wrong war. Everything is sharp, vivid, heartbreaking, brave. The voice throughout is unrelenting in its honesty. You understand the main character's descent into self-annihilaiton; then you understand even better her other, second descent--into staying alive. None of it is easy; none of it is less than brilliant.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Benchaluck on March 11, 2003
Format: Hardcover
Glory Goes and Gets Some is a great read, but also absolutely shocking. Some of the things this narrator does are incredible. As she narrates, she takes us through her life, instead of through a rose tinted view of the world, we see things as reality hits her at the moment. Her ups, and her downs, and her journey as she spirals towards the darkest parts of herself, at the end, still trying to understand who she is. Emily Carter does a great job with this book, I found myself able to see the character through her eyes, although some parts I found rather personally distasteful (like the part where she mentions having had faked at least 100 orgasms before she hit her mid-twenties is horrible! And having sex with some guy just for [$]! Whoa!) and some parts I was left wondering why it was even mentioned, but it was all still part of what made the reading so unique and the main character so refreshingly different.
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Format: Paperback
If you want to read a book narrated by protagonists who have suffered for their nonconformity, sensitivity, and intelligence, you will undoubtedly have many choices. But if you want your protagonist to be all this and FEMALE, you do not have many choices. Most female-narrated books fall into a few tiresome categories. To name a few: 1. The long-suffering wife/mother drama,involving abusive husbands, messed-up kids, elderly parents...basically the protagonist has little to distinguish her personality from the million other relationally-obsessed women going through these issues, resulting in a tame and tepid narrative voice 2. The irritating 'chick-lit' genre, in which the narrator drones on and on about her weight, shopping, and boys 3. Morality tales of 'bad girls' who've engaged in the same societally-disliked activities that many men do (drugs, sex, alcoholism, gambling, theft, etc.) but because they are female, their activities are considered less edgy and more sleazy/appalling. The book therefore, in order to teach this lesson (that men can misbehave but women can't without paying a dear price mostly due to their gender), involves the protagonist getting raped, pregnant, prostituting herself--all gender-specific maladies--before entering some treatment program and eventually (years down the road) becoming the sort of tame woman who would narrate #2. The narrator will feel guilt over her 'misbehavior', often blaming her poor treatment at the hands of men on her drug use rather than on her own personality, her ways of dealing with men, society's norms regarding male/female interactions, or on the individual men themselves. That being said, Glory Goes And Get Some is the ONE NOVEL I HAVE FOUND that doesn't fall into this tiresome trap.Read more ›
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Tim Lieder on April 21, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was an Emily Carter fan when she wrote articles for Twin Cities Reader (before it was eliminated by the Village Voice Corporation who went and bought both weeklies in Mpls and decided that they didn't want to compete with themselve) because she was funny, insightful. She would say anything. Her movie reviews actually reviewed the movies (not always an easy thing to do in an "alternative" weekly where most movie reviewers are trying to write their deconstructionist masters theses) and they were always funny even when there was a dopy undercurrent (I still laugh at her movie review of Moonlight & Valentino where she gave a very positive review to Jon Bon Jovi's [...] On the other hand, several friends hated the way she gave the ending to Heat) and her articles about Judaism, stripping and AIDS doctors were brilliant.

Unfortunately, success at one writing style does not translate into success at another (compare Stephen King's novels and his dreadful screenplays) and Carter's humor doesn't survive the transition from articles to fiction.

The character of Glory is one of the more unlikeable creatures in literature. While many confessional writers (Grahame Greene for example) like to write themselves as horrible people, it's still not fun to read. Glory is a jerk that refers to her rich family and her life on the edge. The story "The Bride" is at the center of the book with her journey from private school outcast to punk club creep to HIV-positive recovering addict in Minnesota. It's riveting, but the other stories that use the same elements fall flat.

There are some exceptions. The one where she doesn't want to date a guy from AA because she's HIV-positive and where he slips back into old habits is great.
Read more ›
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Glory Goes and Gets Some: Stories
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