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Too Much Happiness (Vintage International) Paperback – November 2, 2010
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"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover," illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Learn more
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Ten superb new stories by one of our most beloved and admired writersâthe winner of the 2009 Man Booker International Prize.
With clarity and ease, Alice Munro once again renders complex, difficult events and emotions into stories about the unpredictable ways in which men and women accommodate and often transcend what happens in their lives.
In the first story a young wife and mother, suffering from the unbearable pain of losing her three children, gains solace from a most surprising source. In another, a young woman, in the aftermath of an unusual and humiliating seduction, reacts in a clever if less-than-admirable fashion. Other tales uncover the “deep-holes” in a marriage, the unsuspected cruelty of children, and, in the long title story, the yearnings of a nineteenth-century female mathematician.
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Without a doubt most of the stories within this collection are engaging. Except that, sadly, in most cases the story arc progressed along rather weary, trying lines. As Miss Munro's topics involve the most complex and difficult aspects of human interactions I've seen reflections of myself and many of my conundrums in her previous offerings. Almost always I've come away wiser and stronger after reading her works. Most everybody would if they read enough Munro and in the right way.
Except not this time. The bulk of the subject matter was grotesque and offputting. A mingling of noirish and exploitive. Explore Munro's earlier writings to discover mini-masterpieces to inspire and galvanize and leave you craving for more (and more and) ....
Although I usually don't read much fiction, I am addicted to her work. Out of the many books of her short stories I've read, this one is one of my favorite ones.
Alice Munro not only writes extraordinarily well but has an acute ability to describe the most diverse characters in a way the reader can get into their souls. She relates to human strengths and weaknesses, choices, and circumstances with no prejudicial judgement. To all those able to immerse themselves into the beauty of reading, I highly recommend this book.
The last story was different, in that it presented historical characters who were deeply interested in things of some import, and worked hard to make progress toward goals that they thought significant. This probably reflects the source of the story in the stories of historical mathematicians.
My favourite story from this collection is "Dimensions" - a very chilling tale of dealing with a tragic personal loss. As a mother myself I found it heartbreaking to read and yet somehow uplifting as well. There is light at the end of every tunnel although maybe the light has a different quality than before entering the tunnel.
I heartily recommend this book.