on 29 February 2000
In Happenstance, the book is literally in two separate parts: in one half the wife tells her story and you flip over the book and the other half covers the same period of time as recounted by the husband. I have read all of Carol Shields' books (short stories and novels), and this, I think, is my all time favourite. Carol Shields' greatest achievement is managing - in all her books - to make ordinary people who lead seemingly ordinary existences so fascinating.
on 7 July 2001
I read the woman's section first, and I thought that was going to be much more sympathetic. But then I read the man's section, and found that my sympathies had been reversed. It's a medium-good book, enjoyable, but in the end a bit slight.