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A Good Man Is Hard to Find and Other Stories (A Harvest/Hbj Book) Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
I could tell from the very beginning of each story that something ominous was going to happen. I didn't know when, I didn't know how, and I didn't know exactly what it would be. Always, I was surprised. And yet, when I thought of it later, each story could have gone no other way. All of them had a sad or tragic ending, although some were more awful than others. What keeps the narrative exciting though is a way she has of suddenly disappearing the storyline and taking it up in another place, leaving just enough information to spark the imagination. Then, when I think I have it all figured out, things change again.
Ms. O'Connor writes in simple startling sentences. And most of the stories are no more than 20 or 30 pages long. I found it hard to read one story right after the other however. Each one was so thought provoking that, even though I felt a great deal of discomfort, I wanted to stay with each just a little bit longer. That's because they move much too fast and are too intriguing to stop. Later, when the initial shock of the story is over, is the time to work it out philosophically. And it is then that I could appreciate the mastery of her craft.
This is a truly fine book and I unquestionably give it a high recommendation. It is certainly not for everyone however. These stories haunt uncomfortably. But those willing to explore the dark side of human nature in this small work of art will love it.
Flannery is brilliant writer whose experience in deep Southern Georgia shines through her language and characters. Each of her stories reflects a new detail of life in the south in the 1940's and 50's ranging from black prejudice, to staunch-almost ludicrous-religious fanaticism. Most of her stories concern people who live on family farms in the middle of nowhere and have little contact with the outside world. From this setting, Flannery has a lot of flexibility to develop her characters who are often without contact outside of their immediate family for days or even weeks on end and thus are believable representatives of southern heritage and culture.
Perhaps the most distinguishing part of O'Connor's writing, is her ability to create larger-than-life characters who's personalities are both exciting and disturbing: a woman who denies her own pregnancy; a colorful grandmother who refuses to see the truth of the lethal Misfit; and a one-armed vagabond who robs a innocent woman of her dearest possession. Each character represents and portrays a person whose personality and view of life is so set and unbending that their response to adversity leads to sadness and often death. Each ending leaves the reader deep in thought, and searching within his/her own soul for answers to the character's actions. She seems to have a way with words so that just by describing one of her characters, she almost tells a story of their persona, mentality, and background.
O'Connor's ability to write is sheer genius, and A Good Man is Hard to Find is nothing short of her best work. It deserves every bit of praise that can be heaped upon it.
Another story that follows the indirect theme pattern is "The Life You Save May Be Your Own." Again O'Connor takes us into the lives of a Mother, innocent girl, and a wanderer. The mother and the wanderer are both guilty of a society driven superficiality hiding their true feelings. O'Connor convey's this uniquely for each of them: with the wanderer, it is with imagery such as "Mr. Shiftlet's smile stretched like a weary snake waking up by a fire;" with the mother it is with her speech, and how Mr. Shiftlet reacts to her speech.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
I didn't love most of the stories but they are all well written.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Flannery O'Connor's classic short-story collection, featuring dark, pessimistic stories about Southern life, often with ironic twists at the end, really needs no introduction. Read morePublished on Dec 16 2001 by S. Turlington
This collection of short stories by Flannery O'Connor reveal some reality in Southern life. Each of the short stories details an event or portion of a persons life, and how... Read morePublished on Oct. 24 2001 by bonnie
This is not a story to read before trying to sleep, the images that O'Connor creates engage the mind hours after you have finished the last story. Read morePublished on Oct. 24 2001
When I read the first story, "A Good Man is Hard to Find," in Flannery O'Conner's book of short stories, I came away confused, dissatisfied, and alarmed. Read morePublished on Oct. 24 2001 by Avery McKinney
When I first started reading this book I thought that it was quite unusual. However, as I started to look more deeply at the stories and attemped to analyze them I found that the... Read morePublished on Oct. 24 2001 by Tisha
Flannery O'Connor's A Good Man Is Hard to Find is a well-written series of stories all set in the Southern States. Read morePublished on Oct. 24 2001 by Amazon Customer
Personally, I thought this book was pretty interesting. I don't see how most of it is comical with people dying and in a constant search for grace. Read morePublished on Oct. 24 2001 by Ryan
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