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What We Talk about When We Talk about Anne Frank: Stories (Vintage)

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What We Talk about When We Talk about Anne Frank: Stories (Vintage) Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

These eight new stories from the celebrated novelist and short-story writer Nathan Englander display a gifted young author grappling with the great questions of modern life, with a command of language and the imagination that place Englander at the very forefront of contemporary American fiction.

The title story, inspired by Raymond Carver’s masterpiece, is a provocative portrait of two marriages in which the Holocaust is played out as a devastating parlor game. In the outlandishly dark “Camp Sundown” vigilante justice is undertaken by a group of geriatric campers in a bucolic summer enclave. “Free Fruit for Young Widows” is a small, sharp study in evil, lovingly told by a father to a son. “Sister Hills” chronicles the history of Israel’s settlements from the eve of the Yom Kippur War through the present, a political fable constructed around the tale of two mothers who strike a terrible bargain to save a child. Marking a return to two of Englander’s classic themes, “Peep Show” and “How We Avenged the Blums” wrestle with sexual longing and ingenuity in the face of adversity and peril. And “Everything I Know About My Family on My Mother’s Side” is suffused with an intimacy and tenderness that break new ground for a writer who seems constantly to be expanding the parameters of what he can achieve in the short form.

Beautiful and courageous, funny and achingly sad, Englander’s work is a revelation.

Review:

“Englander’s new collection of stories tells the tangled truth of life in prose that, as ever, surprises the reader with its gnarled beauty....Certifiable masterpieces of contemporary short-story art.” Michael Chabon

Review:

“A resounding testament to the power of the short story from a master of the form. Englander’s latest hooks you with the same irresistible intimacy, immediacy and deliciousness of stumbling in on a heated altercation that is absolutely none of your business; it’s what great fiction is all about.” Téa Obreht

Review:

“It takes an exceptional combination of moral humility and moral assurance to integrate fine-grained comedy and large-scale tragedy as daringly as Nathan Englander does.” Jonathan Franzen

Review:

“Courageous and provocative. Edgy and timeless. In Englander’s hands, storytelling is a transformative act. Put him alongside Singer, Carver, and Munro. Englander is, quite simply, one of the very best we have.” Colum McCann

Review:

“Nathan Englander writes the stories I am always hoping for, searching for. These are stories that transport you into other lives, other dreams. This is deft, engrossing, deeply satisfying work. Englander is, to me, the modern master of the form. And this collection is the very best of the best.” Geraldine Brooks

Review:

"What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank vividly displays the humor, complexity, and edge that we've come to expect from Nathan Englander's fiction — always animated by a deep, vibrant core of historical resonance." Jennifer Egan

Review:

“Englander’s wisest, funniest, bravest, and most beautiful book. It overflows with revelations and gems.” Jonathan Safran Foer

Review:

“Nathan Englander’s elegant, inquisitive, and hilarious fictions are a working definition of what the modern short story can do.” Jonathan Lethem

Review:

“The depth of Englander’s feeling is the thing that separates him from just about everyone. You can hear his heart thumping feverishly on every page.” Dave Eggers

Review:

“A marvel....At home in many idioms, Englander unerringly finds the right one for each of his stories…few literary works have better demonstrated their veracity lately than this glorious collection.” Financial Times

Review:

“Outstanding…In the title story, two Jewish couples spar relentlessly, and Englander shows an unerring ear for dialogue.” The Independent

Review:

“Nathan Englander, a master of short fiction, writes about West Bank settlers and Orthodox families, the Holocaust and mixed marriages, but not to editorialize about them. His real subjects are memory, obsession, choices, and consequences....In Nathan Englander’s eyes, human beings make choices for admirable and regrettable reasons, with good and bad outcomes. His compelling storytelling, his compassion, and his startling originality make Englander an essential writer. This collection confirms his exceptional talents yet again, and it is not to be missed.” Jewish Book Council

Review:

“Few collections are ever heralded as ‘big books’ or are met with as much excitement as Nathan Englander’s. Relieving our unbearable urge for more is What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank, stories that possess the age-old wisdom of folktales populated by characters trapped in the net of history confronting the universal capacity for evil and the depths of our longing.” Vanity Fair

Review:

“While so much of today’s Jewish-American fiction revolves around the inheritance of loss and the ancestral need to remember, Englander brilliantly, often hilariously, and occasionally quite jarringly tackles the very nature of memory itself, how extreme the difference can be between generations, and what exactly one owes one’s forbearers when it comes to a heritage of pain and dislocation.” Interview

Review:

“In his new collection, the reader feels the musculature beneath the skin of his short fiction and keenly appreciates that this is where his supreme power lies. Englander is his own writer. One may think of, say, Bernard Malamud as a possible influence, but which masters, if any, guided him in the early stages of his career have been bid adieu as Englander sails his own personally mapped seas.” Booklist

Review:

“Parables of emotional complexity and moral ambiguity, with lessons that are neither easy nor obvious, by a short-story master....The author at his best.” Kirkus (Starred Review)

Review:

“Although most of the stories center on Englander’s clear interest in the role religion and history play on his characters’ lives, they also transcend these narrow themes to address the universal with humor and subtle observation....In his wide-ranging new collection, Englander masters the art of the short story with all its craft, humor and compassion.” Shelf Awareness

Review:

“What Englander is saying is that we know ourselves, or don’t, on different levels, that we exist individually and as part of a heritage....Who will hide us? Who are we, really? How do ritual and culture intersect? Such questions exist at the heart of this accomplished collection, in which stories are what make us who we are.” LA Times

Review:

“What’s wonderful about Englander is that all of his stories seem like they would fall flat or foolish in someone — anyone — else’s hands, but somehow he manages to pull it off and leave you breathless at the end.” Flavorpill (10 New Must-Reads for February)

Review:

“This volume showcases Mr. Englander’s extraordinary gifts as a writer…a combination of psychological insight, allegorical gravity and sometimes uproarious comedy…to explore how faith and family (and the stories characters tell about faith and family) ineluctably shape an individual’s identity.” Michiko Kakutani

Review:

“Englander has sharpened his focus. His subjects are mercy, vengeance and their moody, intractable stepchild, righteousness. He is never deaf to the past or willing to grant us that luxury....A kind of hard-won wisdom spills out on every page....Terrific collection.” New York Times Book Review

Review:

“Englander’s second book of stories deserves high praise. It’s audacious and idiosyncratic, darkly clever and brightly faceted…Illustrate why Englander is the world’s best young interpreter of the Jewish dilemma.” San Francisco Chronicle

Review:

“[A] humane, philosophically provocative new story collection.” Boston Globe

Review:

“Introspective, self-divided, and self-ironical characters recur often in Englander’s stories, cutting the heaviness of the darker themes of loss and violence that permeate the narrative....A wonderful collection.” Library Journal

Review:

“Nathan Englander is fearless, big-hearted and incredibly funny....Cut in line to buy this book; chances are, you’ll cry; guaranteed you’ll laugh.” Oregonian

Synopsis:

A New York Times Notable Book

An NPR Best Book of 2012

These eight powerful stories, dazzling in their display of language and imagination, show a celebrated short-story writer and novelist grappling with the great questions of modern life.

From the title story, a provocative portrait of two marriages inspired by Raymond Carver’s masterpiece, to “Peep Show” and “How We Avenged the Blums,” two stories that return to the author’s classic themes of sexual longing and ingenuity in the face of adversity, these stories affirm Nathan Englander’s place at the very forefront of contemporary American fiction.

About the Author

Nathan Englander’s short fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and numerous anthologies, including The Best American Short Stories and The O. Henry Prize Stories. Englander is the author of the novel The Ministry of Special Cases and the story collection For the Relief of Unbearable Urges, which earned him a PEN/Malamud Award and the Sue Kaufman Prize for First Fiction from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

 

www.nathanenglander.com

Product Details

ISBN:
9780307949608
Subtitle:
Stories (Vintage)
Author:
Englander, Nathan
Publisher:
Vintage Books
Subject:
Stories (single author)
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Vintage
Publication Date:
20130331
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
A.&rdquo; &ndash;<i>Entertainment Weekly</i><br><b
Language:
English
Pages:
240
Dimensions:
7.9 x 5.1 x 0.69 in 0.5188 lb

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Related Subjects

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Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Jewish

What We Talk about When We Talk about Anne Frank: Stories (Vintage) New Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$15.00 In Stock
Product details 240 pages Vintage Books - English 9780307949608 Reviews:
"Review" by , “Englander’s new collection of stories tells the tangled truth of life in prose that, as ever, surprises the reader with its gnarled beauty....Certifiable masterpieces of contemporary short-story art.”
"Review" by , “A resounding testament to the power of the short story from a master of the form. Englander’s latest hooks you with the same irresistible intimacy, immediacy and deliciousness of stumbling in on a heated altercation that is absolutely none of your business; it’s what great fiction is all about.”
"Review" by , “It takes an exceptional combination of moral humility and moral assurance to integrate fine-grained comedy and large-scale tragedy as daringly as Nathan Englander does.”
"Review" by , “Courageous and provocative. Edgy and timeless. In Englander’s hands, storytelling is a transformative act. Put him alongside Singer, Carver, and Munro. Englander is, quite simply, one of the very best we have.”
"Review" by , “Nathan Englander writes the stories I am always hoping for, searching for. These are stories that transport you into other lives, other dreams. This is deft, engrossing, deeply satisfying work. Englander is, to me, the modern master of the form. And this collection is the very best of the best.”
"Review" by , "What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank vividly displays the humor, complexity, and edge that we've come to expect from Nathan Englander's fiction — always animated by a deep, vibrant core of historical resonance."
"Review" by , “Englander’s wisest, funniest, bravest, and most beautiful book. It overflows with revelations and gems.”
"Review" by , “Nathan Englander’s elegant, inquisitive, and hilarious fictions are a working definition of what the modern short story can do.”
"Review" by , “The depth of Englander’s feeling is the thing that separates him from just about everyone. You can hear his heart thumping feverishly on every page.”
"Review" by , “A marvel....At home in many idioms, Englander unerringly finds the right one for each of his stories…few literary works have better demonstrated their veracity lately than this glorious collection.”
"Review" by , “Outstanding…In the title story, two Jewish couples spar relentlessly, and Englander shows an unerring ear for dialogue.”
"Review" by , “Nathan Englander, a master of short fiction, writes about West Bank settlers and Orthodox families, the Holocaust and mixed marriages, but not to editorialize about them. His real subjects are memory, obsession, choices, and consequences....In Nathan Englander’s eyes, human beings make choices for admirable and regrettable reasons, with good and bad outcomes. His compelling storytelling, his compassion, and his startling originality make Englander an essential writer. This collection confirms his exceptional talents yet again, and it is not to be missed.”
"Review" by , “Few collections are ever heralded as ‘big books’ or are met with as much excitement as Nathan Englander’s. Relieving our unbearable urge for more is What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank, stories that possess the age-old wisdom of folktales populated by characters trapped in the net of history confronting the universal capacity for evil and the depths of our longing.”
"Review" by , “While so much of today’s Jewish-American fiction revolves around the inheritance of loss and the ancestral need to remember, Englander brilliantly, often hilariously, and occasionally quite jarringly tackles the very nature of memory itself, how extreme the difference can be between generations, and what exactly one owes one’s forbearers when it comes to a heritage of pain and dislocation.”
"Review" by , “In his new collection, the reader feels the musculature beneath the skin of his short fiction and keenly appreciates that this is where his supreme power lies. Englander is his own writer. One may think of, say, Bernard Malamud as a possible influence, but which masters, if any, guided him in the early stages of his career have been bid adieu as Englander sails his own personally mapped seas.”
"Review" by , “Parables of emotional complexity and moral ambiguity, with lessons that are neither easy nor obvious, by a short-story master....The author at his best.”
"Review" by , “Although most of the stories center on Englander’s clear interest in the role religion and history play on his characters’ lives, they also transcend these narrow themes to address the universal with humor and subtle observation....In his wide-ranging new collection, Englander masters the art of the short story with all its craft, humor and compassion.”
"Review" by , “What Englander is saying is that we know ourselves, or don’t, on different levels, that we exist individually and as part of a heritage....Who will hide us? Who are we, really? How do ritual and culture intersect? Such questions exist at the heart of this accomplished collection, in which stories are what make us who we are.”
"Review" by , “What’s wonderful about Englander is that all of his stories seem like they would fall flat or foolish in someone — anyone — else’s hands, but somehow he manages to pull it off and leave you breathless at the end.”
"Review" by , “This volume showcases Mr. Englander’s extraordinary gifts as a writer…a combination of psychological insight, allegorical gravity and sometimes uproarious comedy…to explore how faith and family (and the stories characters tell about faith and family) ineluctably shape an individual’s identity.”
"Review" by , “Englander has sharpened his focus. His subjects are mercy, vengeance and their moody, intractable stepchild, righteousness. He is never deaf to the past or willing to grant us that luxury....A kind of hard-won wisdom spills out on every page....Terrific collection.”
"Review" by , “Englander’s second book of stories deserves high praise. It’s audacious and idiosyncratic, darkly clever and brightly faceted…Illustrate why Englander is the world’s best young interpreter of the Jewish dilemma.”
"Review" by , “[A] humane, philosophically provocative new story collection.”
"Review" by , “Introspective, self-divided, and self-ironical characters recur often in Englander’s stories, cutting the heaviness of the darker themes of loss and violence that permeate the narrative....A wonderful collection.”
"Review" by , “Nathan Englander is fearless, big-hearted and incredibly funny....Cut in line to buy this book; chances are, you’ll cry; guaranteed you’ll laugh.”
"Synopsis" by , A New York Times Notable Book

An NPR Best Book of 2012

These eight powerful stories, dazzling in their display of language and imagination, show a celebrated short-story writer and novelist grappling with the great questions of modern life.

From the title story, a provocative portrait of two marriages inspired by Raymond Carver’s masterpiece, to “Peep Show” and “How We Avenged the Blums,” two stories that return to the author’s classic themes of sexual longing and ingenuity in the face of adversity, these stories affirm Nathan Englander’s place at the very forefront of contemporary American fiction.

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