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Contents May Have Shifted: A Novel Hardcover – February 6, 2012
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...[Houston] has...concocted a tale so vivid, intricate, and intimate that it puts high-def TV to shame... (Natasha Clark - Elle Magazine)
Top Customer Reviews
The narrative shifts back, forth and sideways, both in location and time, which felt both fresh and familiar to me and at the end I understood why. Isn't this how we actually live our lives?
I've been a fan since Cowboys and this new book did not disappoint. It feels like Cowboys in a way, something that is going to get people talking about life, love, friendship and truth in interesting ways.
This is a book about relationships and support, love and spiritual growth and especially travel. I found Houston's remarks about difficult situations and ever entertaining travel guides (entertaining, whether they mean to be or not) shifting between hilarious and enlightening. I often observed that what she voiced or thought was close to what my own reaction would have been.
Some readers might be disconcerted by Houston's jumps from California to Bhutan to Alaska and back again. But once I found the rhythm, I decided that this is what life is really like. We don't finish every story we tell or live all at once.
Pam Houston has written a marvelous book, both poignant and funny.
by Judith Helburn
for Story Circle Book Reviews
reviewing books by, for, and about women
Before the purchase I read the book's reviews here on Amazon and first had a very negative reaction towards the negative review written by wrywreviewer. 'No one was going to talk bad about Pam Houston.' Even though, I do not agree with the review 100%, I was astonished that somewhere in the middle of the book I started realizing that the reviewer was partially right.
Unlike many reviewers, I did not mind what they called "dis-joined" material. Although, the writing is stream-of-consciousness-like, it is not difficult to follow and makes sense. The author's use of paragraphs, to distinguish the current situation or setting from a past situation, action, feeling or opinion that the author thinks about at the current moment, is clear for the most part... As far as the form, this book is interesting to me. It is the content and writing style I do not care for.
I don't know how some reviewers found it to be adventurous, emotional and funny. Just because the narrator travels around the globe it doesn't make for an adventure. To me, this was a mere rambling on about places, situations, relationships without any deeper emotion. There was just a handful of chapters that I thought were well written. A few of them were sort of funny, a few of them seemed like banal story, on the surface, but actually contained some very interesting moment, situation and therefore evoked some kind of an emotion in me. The rest, I went through without them leaving any impact on me. If someone just handed this book to me without a cover, I would have never guessed this is a book by Houston.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Pam Houston is an articulate, expressive and vulnerable writer. The reader can feel her heart, passion, struggles and searching, as she shares the life experiences that challenge... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Laura Howard
It took me a little time to recognize the genius in this book, but once I got into the pulse of it, I found myself delighted by the flashes of insight, fabulous writing and... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Hob Osterlund
This is an unusual novel. The narrative is organized by locations, but the thrust of the story builds as the novel continues.Published 8 months ago by E. Allen
Travelogue travel-hogs will be disappointed by this novel, but anyone who romanticizes natural beauty, small truthful moments, or feels they've got a "broken picker" (referring to... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Hidetoshi Suzuki
Finishing the last of Pam's books last night, I'm in a melancholy state. It feels like the very first day back from a great adventurous vacation, or taking leave from a far-away... Read morePublished 13 months ago by Michelle L.
I did not care for this book at all. It was just a bunch of random thoughts put together. The characters were not strong. The story went nowhere. I had to put it down. Read morePublished 17 months ago by linda dashner
Pam Houston is an incredible writer, and this is one of my favorites among her books. Each chapter takes place in a specific location. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Retail_Queen