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Lives of Girls and Women is nearly always recommended as an ideal introduction to Alice Munro. Everyone who preaches this doctrine knows that it is doing Munro a bit of a disservice: Lives of Girls and Women is her only novel, and it is certainly not her best work. Nonetheless, it is a seductive book, one that consistently turns dabblers into Munro devotees.
Munro follows the late childhood and adolescence of Del Jordan, an intelligent girl growing up in Jubilee, Ontario (one of the most palpable fictional towns in all of Canadian fiction) in the 1940s. Del is ordinary enough--she doesn't fit into her community, but this is the lot of any gifted child in a small, working-class town. Her father raises silver foxes for a living, her mother (a tentative feminist living in a decidedly traditionalist community) drives the back roads trying to sell encyclopedias to farmers. Del's passage through the usual travails of growing up (family deaths, lost friends, the awkward beginnings of sexuality) is rendered with extraordinary skill. It is easy to find compassionate writers, but the Munro of Lives of Girls and Women is a much more valuable find: a writer blessed with empathy, humour, and even cruelty. She can lovingly eviscerate her characters when it is necessary, yet never slips into the lazy shorthand of caricature. Some of her short story collections are better made (Open Secrets and Who Do You Think You Are?, for example), but the scope of Lives of Girls and Women makes it one of Munro's most memorable books. --Jack Illingworth --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"...Munro brilliantly captures the initial tremors of this profound social transition." - Toronto Star --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
This book ended up surprising me. It was rather interesting.Published 13 months ago by Kaylee Verkruisen
Alice Munro is just great. You must read her. Her stories get to the very heart of the lives she knows.Published 14 months ago by Dr. Don Whyte
It's interesting enough that I stayed with it, but not so much that I motored through it in a few hours like with others. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Kristen B
Alice Munro received the Nobel Prize for literature. She then became a "must read".
Sadly, however beautifully written, I found this book to,be very dull. Read more
The content of the book is excellent, Alice Munro is a great writer. The cover of the book was in worse shape then stated which is unfortunate because it was a gift.Published 20 months ago by Vicky Millner
This is a wonderful book, rich as a banquet, as finely worked as an intricate embroidery, the kind of book I love to read and the kind I aspire to write. Read morePublished on July 22 2013 by Allie
Typical anti-male diatribe disguised as a work of literature. This was assigned reading for one of my college literature courses over twenty years ago, and the memory of the... Read morePublished on July 14 2004
Maybe it was because this book was assigned to me to read by a college professor. Or maybe it was becasue I like more of an intreging story. I hated reading this book. Read morePublished on May 2 2002 by Richard K. Stewart III