Same job, different uniform.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Books 1 - 4: The Collected Works of Amy Hempel

I could learn a thing or two from Amy Hempel. "Simple declarative sentences," girlfriday likes to remind me. My sentences are often wordy and convoluted. Hempel's sentences are nothing if not succinct. Her works consist of these four collections of short stories: Reasons to Live, At the Gates of the Animal Kingdom, Tumble Home & The Dog of Marriage.

Here are the words I would choose to sum these stories:
Death. Survival. Dogs. Indifference. Concise. Moments. Frolicsome.

About Eve Grant, Wesley has said that he married the most beautiful woman he ever saw and learned the irrelevance of beauty.
from Three Popes Walk Into a Bar.

The year I began to say vahz instead of vase, a man I barely knew nearly accidentally killed me.
from The Harvest.

Here's a trick I found for how to finally get some sleep. I sleep in my husband's bed. That way the empty bed I look at is my own.
from Nashville Gone to Ashes.

"What I think," Chatty says, "is that if a man loves a woman more than a woman loves a man, then they're even."
fromTumble Home.

I want to know everything about you. So I tell you everything about myself.
from Tumble Home.

"No one tells me better stories," he assured me. I was aware of the point at which a compliment becomes a trap, because you are expected to keep doing the thing you are praised for; resentment will follow when you stop.
from Offertory.

Wikipedia entry
An interview
An "interview."
New York Times Review

I give this book 4/5 stars.

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Blogger elphaba said...

Looks like it has some irony and there's a book I can more easily get behind. I always avoid short stories. Convince me I shouldn't.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Blogger "Molly McGee" said...

Um, no I can't really convince you to not avoid short stories other than just to say that it's complete crazy talk! But I think Amy Hempel or Aimee Bender's "Girl in a Flammable Skirt" should be able to convince you otherwise.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Blogger elphaba said...

Your mom wears a flammable skirt. (You totally opened yourself up on that one)

Thursday, June 19, 2008


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