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4 Local Warehouse Literature- A to Z

Runaway

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Runaway Cover

 

 

Reading Group Guide

<p align="left">“Alice Munro has a strong claim to being the best fiction writer now working in North America. Runaway is a marvel.” –The New York Times Book Review <p align="left">  <p align="left">The introduction, discussion questions, suggestions for further reading, and author biography that follow are intended to enhance your group’s conversation about Alice Munro’s superb new collection, Runaway. In these eight tales, we find women of all ages and circumstances, their lives made palpable by the subtlety and empathy of this incomparable writer.

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Sophie stein, May 7, 2011 (view all comments by Sophie stein)
The beauty of reading any Alice Munro book is that it lasts forever. It's especially true for "Runaway", besides the superb writing, the stories themselves will become part of the fabric of your own life. The "Runaway" characters are so vivid and multi-dimensional that you will feel you know them personally. You might continue to think of them as faraway friends and sometimes wonder how they're getting along or how they would have acted faced with that personal decision of your own. All in all, definitely one the best ways to spend an afternoon.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781400077915
Author:
Munro, Alice
Publisher:
Vintage Books USA
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Women
Subject:
Short Stories (single author)
Subject:
Stories (single author)
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Vintage International
Publication Date:
20051131
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
352
Dimensions:
8 x 5.1 x .72 in .585 lb

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Runaway Used Trade Paper
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Product details 352 pages Vintage Books USA - English 9781400077915 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Nothing is new in Munro's latest collection, which is to say that the author continues to perfect her virtuosic formula in these eight short stories, several of which previously appeared in the New Yorker. While her style typifies the traditionally realistic, often domestic genre of that magazine, Munro's stories are also global, bighearted and warm. In the title story, a housekeeper tries to leave her emotionally abusive husband, entangling her employer in the process. Three interconnected stories — 'Chance,' 'Soon' and 'Silence' — follow a schoolteacher as she falls for an older man, returns as a young mother to visit her ailing parents on their farm and much later tries to 'rescue' her daughter from a religious cult. In 'Tricks,' a lonely nurse on a day trip encounters a man from Montenegro and vows to return to his clock shop one year later to resume their affair. In deliberate prose, Munro captures their fleeting moment of passion on a train platform: 'This talk felt more and more like an agreed-upon subterfuge, like a conventional screen for what was becoming more inevitable all the time, more necessary, between them.' Munro's characters are hopeful and proud as they face both the betrayals and gestures of kindness that animate their relationships. One never knows quite where a Munro story will end, only that it will leave an incandescent trail of psychological insight. Agent, William Morris. 100,000 first printing. (Nov. 14)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review A Day" by , "Someone writing at this level well into her seventies, outliving the female friends to whose memory the book is dedicated and who must have been part of its inspiration, is a literary inspiration herself....Maybe even more stories are lying in wait. Such first-rate abundance is an astonishment in any lifetime, let alone that of a middle-class mother, and is — to rework Faulkner's quip regarding Keats — worth any number of young daughters. Though, of course, for the writer it is always more complicated than that. For the reader, however, it is a lovely and simple matter of greed and joy." (read the entire Atlantic Monthly review)
"Synopsis" by , ""Runaway" is the first story in this stunning collection, sure to be a runaway success. All of the eight stories here are new, published in book form for the first time. Two of the eight have never appeared anywhere, so this will be a special feast for the millions of Munro fans around the world.

Miraculously, these stories seem to have been written by a young writer at the peak of her powers. Alice Munro's central characters range from 14-year-old Lauren in "Trespass," through the young couple in "Runaway," whose helpful older neighbour intervenes to help the wife escape, all the way to a 70-year-old woman meeting a friend of her youth on a Vancouver street and sitting with him to recall their tangled lives fifty years earlier, through a web of cheerful lies.

Three of the stories, "Chance," "Soon," and "Silence," are linked, showing us how the young teacher Juliet meets her fisherman lover on a train (and, by terrible chance, visits his B.C. home on the day after his wife's funeral); how, years later, she brings baby Penelope back east to show her parents and learns sad secrets about their marriage; and how, twenty years on, she visits the estranged Penelope in her cult-like B.C. community. The result is more powerful than most novels, a quality in Alice Munro's stories that has been noted by many reviewers.

The final story, "Powers," spans 50 years and runs from Goderich to Vancouver and involves a cast of four characters, each of whom steps forward to dominate the scene, not least Tessa, the plain girl whose psychic powers take her on the vaudeville circuit. But it is Alice Munro's own powers that dominate this collection and that will amaze reviewers and readers. Howcan she keep getting better? How can any one person know so much about the heads and hearts of so many different people? And how can she weave them together in stories that delight academics and ordinary readers alike, making each new Alice Munro book a runaway bestseller?

"From the Hardcover edition.

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