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Horse Thief and Other Stories Paperback – September 1, 2004


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 260 pages
  • Publisher: Curbstone Books; First Edition edition (September 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1931896100
  • ISBN-13: 978-1931896108
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 5.5 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,572,613 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"...a strong debut collection of stories that range widely across the globe in setting and characters..." -- Seatlle Post



"I admire [her] interest in other lives and worlds and her courage and gift of speaking of them so well." -- Grace Paley


"...recommended, especially where short story collections are popular." -- Library Journal

Book Description

Horse Thief is an exciting debut collection of stories by a writer who has published widely in independent magazines and has built up a loyal audience through her readings and poetry chapbooks. Here is a truly trans-Atlantic multi-cultural book with stories located in London and the Pacific Northwest, tales about Roma Gypsy, Native Americans, Iranians and other -immigrants-working-class people struggling to find their way in urban society. Anna Balint embraces diversity of character and viewpoint and gives us a wide range of voices in skillfully woven tales laced with courage and humor. We encounter such people as two young women selling central heating door to door in London, an Iranian immigrant selling used cars in Berkeley and a young Native American girl in a foster home visiting with her birth mother. In each case, the situation breaks open into something more than the purely personal, into something moral or political. Eight of the 13 stories feature the same protagonists-Maria, Ruthie and Annie-at different points in their lives, and explore the ways in which girls and women grow into themselves, sometimes nurturing others as well as themselves, sometimes not being able to, or allowed to, nurture themselves at all. Characters in other stories intersect with one of these three in either direct or subtle ways. From either side of the Atlantic, Horse Thief is about being alive and developing survival skills in the face of adversity.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By W. Pugh on September 22, 2004
Format: Paperback
Through Anna's book you will come to know many vibrant characters whose lives intersect across time, culture, and continents. You'll meet Ruthie, Maria, Sly, Faramez, Zsuzsa, Consuelo, and of course Annie. Ms. Balint brings the lives of Gypsies, Mexican-Americans, African-American Jews, Native Americans, and British together through stories that are inspiring, thought-provoking, funny, and full of pathos.

One story that stands out for me is Wonderbread and Spam. That title alone intrigued me. Ms. Balint is full of the kind of wit that sticks its tongue out at you and says, "See, I made you laugh, didn't I?". At the same time she takes you along as people deal with the struggles of their lives: a dying son, domestic abuse, old age, buying a car.

You will enjoy the read.
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By Babbo on December 15, 2013
Format: Paperback
Love Balint's stories and brilliant writing that open a window on lives lived differently. Why isn't this on the best seller list?
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By D. Miscolta on February 2, 2012
Format: Paperback
This collection of lovingly crafted stories delivers us into the hearts, souls, and broken dreams of characters in London, Seattle, and Berkeley whose lives intersect at times peripherally, at times head-on. These characters are trapped within the circumstances of their lives, by inequities caused by social and economic factors. But they are spirited, both tough and tender, sometimes trapped by their own large-heartedness. I first read this collection several years ago and returned to it recently because I'm a fan of short stories and wanted to revisit this book for its particular strength - voice. Balint is masterful at creating characters that are vivid and making even the mundane meaningful, because a life can turn on the smallest detail. Rereading these stories was like discovering old friends, people I knew and cared about for their spirit and humanity, people, like all of us, doing their best to survive.
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