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News from the World: Stories & Essays Hardcover – April 18, 2011

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News from the World: Stories & Essays + Desperate Characters: A Novel (Norton Paperback Fiction)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 216 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; 1st ed., 1st Ptg edition (April 18, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393081281
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393081282
  • Product Dimensions: 0.9 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 (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,514,101 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Though the original publication dates of the work compiled for this collection span from 1965 to 2010, many of the personal narratives included cover an even wider swath of Fox's life, making for a delightful read. An insightful and sturdy writer, Fox (Desperate Characters) remains humble, curious, and thoroughly likable across decades and genres. While the story "The Broad Estates of Death," published in Harper's in 2004, will be wonderfully familiar to many readers, her essays often seem even more original and telling. Particularly poignant is "Way Down Yonder," in which Fox recalls moving to New Orleans in 1940 and the writer couple from whom she rented a room. In it, we see the city, the segregation, and the early inklings of Fox's own life of letters. Equally captivating is the remembrance of a gay friend whom Fox met while she was a single mother in Manhattan, working as a teacher. With such a rich life history from which to draw, Fox is both wholly singular in her perspective and as knowable and trustworthy as a favorite neighbor. (Apr.)


“Paula Fox is one of our greatest writers. Her prose is a model of ruthless, gorgeous efficiency and her mind is so unnervingly alert to the messy contradictions that come with being human. These essays and stories will delight and inspire anyone who cares about literature, storytelling, and truth itself.” (Tom Bissell, author of Extra Lives)

“Paula Fox's essays and short stories all display a spare, marvelous luminosity.  The author's irreducible voice—it was the same with Virginia Woolf—can always be heard, whatever the genre.” (Thomas Mallon, author of Fellow Travelers)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Ann Cameron on May 24, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Left in a foundling home as an infant, rescued by her Cuban grandmother, raised until age 5 by a single New England minister, reclaimed by the grandmother to live for a time on a Cuban sugar plantation, Paula Fox moved from one place to another for much of her childhood and adolescence,only occasionally living with her neglectful parents. She survived against the odds to become one of the most distinguished of American novelists. Grace, style, and powerful emotional reserve are found in her every line.

Wrenching childhood's aren't known for benefiting people, but they may be more common for the writers and artists among us, who in their travails by necessity develop a keen ability to see what lies under the surface; to distinguish false from true, sentimentality from authentic feeling. Paula Fox's work rings with truth, and her latest book, a tremendously varied collection of stories and essays published as she enters her 88th year, is a triumph and a joy to read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By katalina on July 4, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I continue to be surprised and delighted by Paula Fox's work. Her own personal story is compelling, and what must have been quite a personal transformation of growth is revealed in her words. NEW FROM THE WORLD continues the pleasure: short stories and essays that contain fresh insights into the human condition, providing the reader a look into the recent past through the eyes and mind of a most observant camera.
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