Thursday, May 28, 2009


Toasting Alice Munro

What a joy it was to read that Alice Munro was awarded the Booker International Prize for a lifetime of excellence in writing.

If you haven't heard of Alice Munro, chalk it up to readers' inclinations to novels over the short story. Alice Munro is to the short story today what Chekhov was in the 19th Century: deceptively simple, filled with rare insights into the human condition.

The next time you find yourself without a good read, check out Munro. Go to your local library (if you don't have a card, get one), and check out a copy of her collections of stories. It doesn't matter terribly which one; hers is a talent that doesn't flag. She is particularly good on women trapped in small towns, but they aren't the only focus of her vision. If you saw the movie "Away from Her" with Julie Christie, about a woman with Alzheimer's who goes into a care facility, you saw a film based on her story, "The Bear Went Over the Mountain."

My next post will no doubt return to the snarky world of all that I abhor in the world of politics. How nice it is to sit in this moment of celebration of a writer, so beautiful and complete, inside and out.

(photo of Alice Munro / copyright Derek Shapton)

"The Moons Of Jupiter" is one of my favorites. I've read many of her collections of short stories and you're absolutely right about her status as one of the all time great short story writers. What is it about Canada that they produce so many great female writers?
I actually love short stories. Thanks for the 411 on Ms. Munro.
That name rings a bell.. I'll have to check her out.
Thanks for the tip, the perfect gift for somebody with more library cards than credit cards. When people tell me that they don't read, I feel challenged to put some kind of irresistable smut in their hands. Rarely takes though. Maybe if all the TVs die this month..
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