Short Story Night; Dear Life Stories by Alice Munro

We've never selected a collection of short stories that I can remember. I predict a lively conversation!

Alice Munro’s peerless ability to give us the essence of a life in often brief but always spacious and timeless stories is once again everywhere apparent in this brilliant new collection.

In story after story, she illumines the moment a life is forever altered by a chance encounter or an action not taken, or by a simple twist of fate that turns a person out of his or her accustomed path and into a new way of being or thinking. A poet, finding herself in alien territory at her first literary party, is rescued by a seasoned newspaper columnist, and is soon hurtling across the continent, young child in tow, toward a hoped-for but completely unplanned meeting. A young soldier, returning to his fiancée from the Second World War, steps off the train before his stop and onto the farm of another woman, beginning a life on the move. A wealthy young woman having an affair with the married lawyer hired by her father to handle his estate comes up with a surprising way to deal with the blackmailer who finds them out.

While most of these stories take place in Munro’s home territory—the small Canadian towns around Lake Huron—the characters sometimes venture to the cities, and the book ends with four pieces set in the area where she grew up, and in the time of her own childhood: stories “autobiographical in feeling, though not, sometimes, entirely so in fact.” A girl who can’t sleep imagines night after wakeful night that she kills her beloved younger sister. A mother snatches up her child and runs for dear life when a crazy woman comes into her yard.

Suffused with Munro’s clarity of vision and her unparalleled gift for storytelling, these tales about departures and beginnings, accidents and dangers, and outgoings and homecomings both imagined and real, paint a radiant, indelible portrait of how strange, perilous, and extraordinary ordinary life can be.

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  • Peggy

    Small turnout, but great conversation about books and life.

    May 14, 2013

  • Kim P.

    Ugh, I have developed a nasty chest cold over the weekend. Can't go.
    For my book suggestion, how about "The Round House" by Louise Erdich?

    May 13, 2013

  • Kristine

    Hey ladies! We need to choose some books for upcoming meetings! Bring your ideas tonight!

    May 13, 2013

  • Amanda

    I definitely coming to the next one!

    May 12, 2013

  • Jo Ann B.

    Sorry, due to construction delays, I am still in Denver.

    May 7, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Good Choice!

    December 11, 2012

  • Lisa S.

    Cant wait for this discussion

    December 11, 2012

  • A former member
    A former member

    This is during my new class. Sorry I can't make it.

    December 11, 2012

5 went

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Rafaël

We just grab a coffee and speak French. Some people have been coming every week for months... it creates a kind of warmth to the group.

Rafaël, started French Conversation Group

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