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Read this for school and WTF was this?!
Much of this collection feels like Joyce Carol Oates on autopilot, unfortunately, penning capable and well-written (this is JCO after all) tales without the oomph found in other collections like Wheel of Love and Lovely Dark Deep. This baby clocks in at 25 stories, so I guess it was to be expected that there are some clunkers. And there are some winners, too. Oh yes. The title story is amongst the very best JCO has penned: heartbreaking and scary and beautiful all in one, this story shows off al...
I read this in a women's lit class. I was so upset that I remember actually feeling sick. I just remember being shocked by the way she writes about things like rape with a complete frankness. (shudder) Hard to read if you're not used to sad, train wreck stories...but obviously very effective."When death comes for you, sometimes you know and sometimes you don't"
Heat is one of the best short stories I've read. It's genuinely terrifying. The menace & sense of foreboding kicks in around the second paragraph and doesn't let you go until the last sentence. Told in incredibly simple prose, yet so so effective. And so haunting.
I love Oates' quirky writing. This is some of her better short stories although I like her novels better.
It's rather odd that in my more than two decade close acquaintance with JCO's massive body of work that I've completely ignored her short story output. I recently read her latest (as of now, anyway), Mudwoman and the whole time I read it I was thinking how much better it could've been if pared to its essence and made into a short story (without giving her the opportunity to muck it up with space-filling JCO-esque let's-call-it-poetry-and-not-echolalia repetition and (occasionally) bizarre expos
I discovered Joyce Carol Oates in college as an undergrad with the short story Gold Gloves. I thought she was great. She doesn't disappoint in this collection of short stories. Oates has the ability to write masculine prose in regards to testosterone material. She can capture the male voice better than most male writers. Her female characters are just as fascinating. Oates reveals the dysfunction of white trash vividly and authentically. She is prolific without sacrificing her craft. These stor
True to Oatesian form – an absolutely wonderful read!!! Very rare for me to like all the stories in a short story compilation, but so is the case with this one. Highly recommend! Not for the faint of heart or for anyone who dislikes reading violence in fiction. So why not five stars you ask? I wanted more stories – LOL!
If you're looking for feel good stories, stay far away from anything by Joyce Carol Oates. Some of her stuff should come with a side of antidepressants, and others will make you want a shower to wash off all the ick she makes you feel. Short stories are not a favorite of mine, but JCO writes some of the best of them.
I had to force myself to get through this book because Oates is a genius at taking me to horrible, intimate places where I do not want to go! She's a master of the craft and any aspiring writer should read these. Unforgettable.
One of my very favorite collections of short stories. What an amazing talent and brilliant mind!
I love her short stories, perhaps more than her novels.
one of my favorite short story collections i have ever read, years after reading them, i think about the stories in this colllection
If you've read Joyce Carol Oates before, the frankness of these short stories do not come as a shock. There is no other writer out there like her. She's brilliant.
Who I turn to when I want to know how short stories are written; a master.
I read her collection of short stories dated 2006 not that long ago and found this collection used recently, dated 1992. There were even couple of repeats that appeared in both. But Joyce Carol Oates is a master (mistress?) of the short story (and longer forms). The short story is in some ways a bigger challenge than the full novel. That she is able to rapidly infuse her 'peeps' with a level of strangeness, credibility and fascination is what makes her so readable. She can do it often from page
My Fav quotes:- Rhea and Rhoda were the same girl; they'd wanted it that way. Only looking from one to the other could you see they were two.- The [funeral] room was crowded; there was only one way in and out.- They thought the same thoughts sometimes at the same moment, had the same dream and went all day trying to remember it, brining it back like something you'd be hauling out of the water on a tangled line. - When death comes for you, you sometimes know and sometimes don't.- Strip! Come on!_...
I can't believe this is the first thing that I've read by Joyce Carol Oates. She's been on my list for a very long time and I'm a little disappointed that it took me this long to give something of hers a shot. She is a tremendous writer. I'm a big, big fan of her style. This collection (my only point of reference on her, for now) is filled with stories that, no matter the subject matter, are first and foremost written meticulously well. I have a huge amount of respect for Oates's obvious attenti...
I had to read this book in stages as I've learned from experience that I can only read so many short stories in a row. Especially with an author like Joyce Carol Oates. Don't get me wrong, she is highly accomplished and her work keeps your attention glued to the page. But you can't help but wonder two things with her stories: when is the violence going to take place and who is going to instigate it? To her credit, it often doesn't unfold the way you would predict, but still, the bloodshed does k...
I really liked this one so I don't know why it took me a MONTH to read! I kept setting it down and taking days to pick it back up (reading a lot of magazines in the interim), but once I'd start reading, it always pulled me in. There were several stories that I wish were full length novels ("Morning", "Heat", "Leila Lee", "Getting to Know All About You") which is usually how I feel reading Joyce Carol Oates's short stories. I have to admit that most of the stories in this collection are damned de...
Vintage Oates. Few can match her when it comes to the short story. The title story is masterful. Oates has a way of illuminating a character so that the reader feels a part of the story, as if this was his/her own experience. Others in this collection that stood out include The Buck, Leila Lee, Craps, Hostage, Morning. A terrific read
Super collection. The last few stories didn't stack up to the rest.
It's a little strange, but I didn't enjoy this collection as much as I expected to. This may be because I actually prefer Oates in her Gothic/SF modes; it may be that the realist stories read too similarly to me. (Or it may be that she actually doesn't tend toward closure in as focused a way in her "realist" stories as she does in her Gothic-esque ones. I mean, you know, I don't have this problem with e.g. Margaret Atwood.) I give the book three stars mainly because of a few Gothic-esque stories...
This short story is so creepy and oftentimes does not make sense in between some paragraphs. The language is a bit low-level, but the descriptions of the twins are nice. It is disconcerting when no one in the Whipple family knew about the murders, and that Roger Whipple is such a "good" boy who is nice. But it was pretty obvious at the end that the twins were most likely raped then killed.I also saw the video from a random teacher on Youtube and it was even creepier, but also helped with the rea...
The first 2/3 of the stories were hit and miss. The last third were excellent. The final story is haunting. I love JCO's short stories better than her novels, but this is a lot of bleakness in one short story collection, hence the fact that this took me almost 8 months (?) to finish! But I love how detailed she sets the scenes.
Joyce Carol Oates has probably written more bad prose, by word count, than any other American writer, but when she's on, she's on, and the title story is fantastic -- up there with "In the Region of Ice" and "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" (And better than the latter, I'd say.)
So I didn't actually finish this, but it's been on hold for a while and I think it might stay on hold for a longer while. There are about a billion stories in this collection--some are excellent, some not so much--but after 20 or so I just felt like I might go into a Joyce Carol Oates coma.
A fun, insightful and darkly eclectic collection of stories. Oates was one of those writers I had always wanted to read but for whatever reason hadn't gotten around to. I'm happy I finally did and plan on reading more.
Though I definitely enjoy twisted suburban tales, these stories didn't live up to her reputation. I didn't feel closure, as another reviewed mentioned. I can tolerate lose ends every few stories; that kind of effect can be desirable. However, in a collection of short stories, I prefer variety.