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The Love Of A Good Woman Paperback – 2 Mar 2000


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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage; New Ed edition (2 Mar. 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0099287862
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099287865
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 104,391 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

"Munro is at the height of her powers...a testimony to a great talent" Guardian "That Munro is a great writer of short stories should, by now, go without saying. She is also one of the two or three best writers of fiction (of any length) now alive. The title story of this collection is one of her masterpieces...a brilliant piece of story-telling, tautly-structured and exquisitely balanced" Sunday Times "A new collection of Alice Munro stories is a literary event that more and more of us look forward to, we are very unlikely to find a richer or rarer treat all year...the eight new stories in The Love of a Good Woman show this miraculous and truly great writer at the height of her powers...a perfect story collection" Scotland on Sunday "Alice Munro's stories...reward each pleasurable effort, as the best fiction always does...a Munro story has the depth and intricacy of a long novel, more than any other living writer in English...she can account for 20 years of a person's life in a single, telling paragraph, or even in a subtly placed phrase...The Love of a Good Woman is a superb, but unsettling, collection" Daily Telegraph "One of the finest short-story writers of our time...absorbing and brilliant" Observer

Book Description

**Winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature**

‘She can account for 20 years of a person’s life in a single, telling paragraph, or even in a subtly placed phrase…The Love of a Good Woman is a superb, but unsettling collection’ Scotsman on Sunday


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 5 May 2001
Format: Paperback
Sorry, but I completely disagree with the previous reviewer. This was the best book I have read this year. If you like slice-of-life writing, if you are looking for a book that makes you think 'yes, I have felt exactly like that', if you are a fan of Raymond Carver, do read The Love of a Good Woman. It is wonderful.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Zanna Star on 15 Nov. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I don’t know where to start with this book so I'm just going to dive in. Alice Munro is a very very good writer, the sort of talent who makes me think of Anne Rice's quip that Renoir sold his soul: it doesn't figure that a person can craft such luminously wonderful art without divine or diabolical help!

One of the things she does magnificently is write about children from their perspective in a way that is as delightful and frustrating and surprising as actually being with children. Once you've marvelled at this feat for a while you realise she is somehow doing the same thing with everyone, letting them speak and think and astonish and reveal, as if they live behind the scenes.

She is so gentle though, so respectful. She doesn't make that error that Katherine Mansfield stamped on in DH Lawrence of invading bodies and psyches as if we could ever understand others by magical omniscience rather than by empathy. The boys in the title story keep their fierce dignity, their sacred privacy. Even when Munro describes horrible traumatic episodes, she manages, with great sensitivity and care, to maintain a distance that keeps the reader safe from visceral response. You might want to call that shying away, but personally I'm kneeling in gratitude when an author can achieve this balance. I want to hear about trauma without being triggered where possible.

Loving Munro is also easy because her ethics of care and compassion for others are embodied by these stories, for example by Enid, the protagonist of the title story. Yet Munro refuses to paint an icon for worship: Enid can live as she does only because of her enabling circumstances, she experiences poisoned fantasies, and her goodwill is not unconditional.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Somersetgirl on 13 Dec. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I had to read this as it was a Book Club choice and perhaps was chosen because Alice Munro had recently been selected as a Nobel Prizewinner. As these are short stories and, as I understand it, most of her writing consists of short stories, some were a little worried as to how we would review it. I have to say that I didn't get time to finish the book within the month that we had. However, those that I read I found very interesting and intriguing. I didn't like the start of the first book but it all began to make sense once I got into it. I wasn't mad about the Canadian setting, unlike some of my friends, who loved it. (Yes, I know Alice Munro is Canadian!) There was quite a wide range of opinions from some who just didn't like it at all, to some who loved it. I will certainly come back to it at some time and finish it.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By terence dooley on 17 April 2012
Format: Paperback
Alice Munro is (and I think there's a consensus on this) the greatest living writer in English. Though there are hits and misses among her stories, there is a huge majority of direct hits.
It would be wrong to say that she has become darker. She always believed in a good look at the worst. But she has certainly, in her later work, taken literary subtle difficult fiction into the terrain of the thriller and even horror writer. It's a combination few others have tried.
The Love of a Good Woman, for all its beauty, is one of the most horrid and frightening stories I have ever read - as confirmed on a recent admiring unwilling re-reading - what on earth is going to happen after the end of that story?
The same can be said of Save the Reaper with its hints of wild depravity.
Jakarta and The Children Stay show the long after-effects of the freedoms of the 60s and 70s on the survivors of those decades in a way that is both forgiving and unforgiving. No-one like Munro describes how long and strange life is so poetically, uncomfortably, believably.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I find Alice Munro's short stories perceptive, challenging and always interesting. Her 'people' appear ordinary but often exist in extraordinary circumstances and react in ways that we can all relate to. The language is spare but the mental pictures she creates are clear and absorbing. This latest collection reflects the continuing strength of her fiction and mastery of the short story form. Highly recommended.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I give this five stars because Alice Munro is a great writer. (I'd give 4 stars to her shopping list.) But this collection is not easy. There are some intriguing characters and themes but it has the feel of being a practise piece. It is fascinating to read about the murderous confession of an old, dying man but to get to the revealing moments, the reader has to go through long stretches where the author seems to be practising getting her eye in on character and physical description.
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By C. Mulveen on 23 Jan. 2015
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Brilliant as always - quirky off beat
characters and compelling story lines.
I found this hard to leave down and the stories are still resonating long after I read them
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