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Bluebeard's Egg [Kindle Edition]

Margaret Atwood
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

Print List Price: CDN$ 10.99
Kindle Price: CDN$ 8.99 includes free international wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Sold by: Random House Canada, Incorp.
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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

"Conversations in our family were not about feelings," recalls the teenage narrator of "Hurricane Hazel"about her breakup with a boyfriend who "meant what is usually called absolutely nothing to me"in Atwood's (The Handmaid's Tale, etc.) second collection of shortfiction. Unfortunately, the author's arch cleverness and cool understatementanesthetize the impact of the stories' conversations and gloomy relationshipsbetween parents and children, husbands and wives, friends and lovers. Symbols abound and some, reminiscent of Atwood's "edible woman" cake in the book of the same title, are strained. In "Uglypuss," the discordant lovers are political activists; at one point they plan to picket a sock company and dramatize the crucifixion, portraying Christ as a large knitted sock, in red and white stripes. But the collection is somewhat redeemed by the affecting title story, where an egga deceptively innocuous object that, according to the legend, ultimately marks as disobedient two of Bluebeard's unfortunate wivesaptly symbolizes the protagonist's premonitions of doom about her marriage to a man she is desperately afraid of losing, although she describes him as obtuse, blundering and predictable.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

This excellent book of short stories by one of Canada's best-known authors glitters with vivid characterizations and examples of finely crafted story telling. Atwood's dramatic range is impressive. She opens with humorous, gently satirical stories about childhood and adolescence. Her title story skillfully portrays a woman's fear and grief as she begins to question her husband's faithfulness and her own perceptions, while other stories show the despair of characters who are trying to salvage lost relationships or to establish new ones. Many of these stories have the pacing and tone of spoken tales, stories told on front porches or repeated between mothers and daughters. This entertaining book by a gifted writer is highly recommended. Lucinda Ann Peck, Learning Design Assocs . , Gahanna, Ohio
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 3168 KB
  • Print Length: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Emblem Editions (Dec 17 2010)
  • Sold by: Random House Canada, Incorp.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004GTLVH2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #66,352 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Collection of Early Short Stories March 15 2015
By Nicola Mansfield HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
I'll start off by admitting that I'm a great fan of Atwood's writing but absolutely cannot stand her as a person. This being her earlier work I expected to run into some of the vitriolic, man-hating feminism of hers that I can't tolerate. However, I only came to heads with her a couple of times. I found this collection quite satisfying. Due to my opinion of the author feel free to read my following comments with interest, amusement or offense. These are the thoughts that ran through my mind after reading each story.

A couple of the stories were previously published, but the copyright page gives no further details.

1. Significant Moments in the Life of My Mother - The narrator reminisces about the stories her mother used to tell about her own childhood between the wars. The mother is a wonderful storyteller but, even though the stories are told dramatically and humorously I noticed that each one was really in some way unpleasant. There is talk of what life was like back then when men were men and women were ladies. There is some deeper feminist significance to this that I won't go into. Overall, a very engaging historical fiction. (5/5)

2. Hurricane Hazel - No time is given, but it felt like the fifties to me here as the narrator describes the year she was 14 and had her first boyfriend, a 17yo mechanic. She doesn't have any feelings for him or dating in particular, but does all the things that she feels are expected of her at this stage of her life. It is an innocent relationship that the rather mediocre boy feels will eventually lead to permanence but our narrator never sees it as being anything more that a way to spend her time. A well-written tale I enjoyed reading, with an always rather morose feeling hanging over it. (5/5)

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5.0 out of 5 stars Captivated by the Egg. June 2 2002
Format:Audio Cassette
In the car I always have an audiobook to listen to, and the last weeks I really have enjoyed Margareth Atwood's Bluebeard's Egg and other stories.
This is a collection of short stories written by a master of words, and a master of short stories. When Atwood writes she uses no extra words or sentences, she takes us right to the point, and the point in this collection is human beings. Common human beings fighting for their lives. No heros, just plain people like you and me. Every time a new story starts I think, this one cannot be better than the last, but it happend again and again, the story captivates me, and it is all mornings hard to stop the car and go to work - I want to hear just one more sentence, and then one more.
My favorite story though is the one that has given name to the collection, Bluebeard's Egg. A well known fairy tale, told and given it's own meaning by Atwood, or may be she just shows us the original meaning of the story. Sally, the main carachter of the story struggles with the puzzle of her life, to keep all the pieces together. The center of her life is her husband Ed, but how can she be sure that she is also the center in Ed's life? No one can write about this, invite us into and let us be in the feeling of the story like Atwood do.
Britt Arnhild Lindland
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5.0 out of 5 stars Tactile and tangible with biting wit April 5 1998
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
In Bluebeard's Egg, Margaret Atwood weaves her poetic prose though twelve short stories that are as haunting as they are hilarious. Atwood takes the reader on a journey within her characters' minds, using real life for the canvass of her work. While the reader senses almost no movement through the physical world, there is a striking depth and distance traveled in each story.
Atwood's characters range from neurotic artists to doctor's wives, all linked by their dysfunctional existence. In "Uglypuss," Joel, a struggling theater director, goes out for a drink when his estranged girlfriend announces that she is coming over. After a rendezvous of casual sex with an old aquaintance, Joel returns to find his place ravaged and his cat missing. It is in this twisted context where the protagonist asks, "what's the point of continuing, in a society like this one, where it's always two steps forward and two back?"
Atwood, like only a handful of other authors, is able to sharply focus her writing while grappling with philosophical issues. Yvonne, in "The Sunrise," wonders: "if art sucks and everything is only art, what has she done with her life?" All the while, the reader is grounded in sensory details, like Kimberly's "wet pink oyster-like mouth."
In many of the stories, Atwood melts past with present, mimicking the random texture of human thought. The seamless prose carries the reader along, stopping at childhood beach cabins, home economics class, and erotic sexual encounters. These retrospective glimpses are preludes to the hauntingly familiar world that the characters inhabit.
With Bluebeard's Egg, Atwood has reached a new plateau in her writing, showcasing complete mastery of the craft. Her prose grabs the reader, poking and prodding until the comical and horrific are somehow inseperable. This is superlative serious fiction from one of the most prolific authors of the genre. END
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5.0 out of 5 stars facets of our world Sept. 17 1999
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This was the first book by Margaret Atwood I read after reading the short story "Happy Ending" in an anthology.
A great writer is easily recognisable. All you have to do is to write a few lines of a novel or a short story. You will just keep on reading and feel sorry when you are closer to the end than to the beginning of the story.
This collection of short stories shows that Margaret Atwood is a major writer and story teller. Of course, not in the pulp fiction or slimy-sweet sense but you need a curiosity for the inner world of soliloquies and self-observations.
However, she does not give us lectures on psychology, but tells us the story and we can live it from the inside.
In three of the stories the seeds of her later novel, "Cat's Eye" can be found, which I was inspired to read exactly by them. Short stories can always be a good introduction or lead-in for writer and reader alike.
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