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Victory Over Japan: A Book of Stories [Paperback]

Ellen Gilchrist
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Sept. 30 1985 Back Bay Books
This collection of 14 short stories won the American Book Award for fiction when it was published and confirmed the author's reputation as one of the preeminent literary talents of her generation. She enjoys both critical acclaim and great popularity with readers."The stories are wonderful to tell aloud...Gilchrist once again demonstrates not only her willingness to take risks, but her generosity as a writer as well." (The New York Times)"To say that Ellen Gilchrist can write is to say that Placido Domingo can sing. All you need to do is listen....No kidding! VICTORY OVER JAPAN is an absolute knockout!" (Washington Post)

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Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
3.6 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Beauty and Pain April 24 2003
Ellen Gilchrist spoke to me directly in these stories - and I've read every word she's written ever since. The emotions and pain that her "southern belles" go through are incredibly real to me, who has never even been to Fayetteville, Arkansas or Mississippi, or even the southern Illinois of the 40's of which she writes so poignantly. Sometimes she's a little too much of a mother in some of her work, but I thought these stories were perfect.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful stories! March 11 2003
By A Customer
OK. I'm an Ellen Gilchrist fan, so there's some bias here, but no, I do not think the judges wrong to give this book laurels. One story, "Rhoda, A Fable" I've seen in other anthologies.
I think there's some risk in collections of short stories. Some may hit you. They're fabulous. Then they are over. Sigh. Others may not hit you. Sigh. However in this collection there are many more fine stories than average ones.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing stories June 29 2002
Each of the short stories in VICTORY OVER JAPAN is broken into shorter segments, which makes the book easy to put down. Trouble is, you might not bother to pick it up again.
In the first story, 3rd-grader Rhoda chooses as her partner for the war defense paper drive, a classmate who has been bitten by a rabid squirrel. The second story is about a young woman who, unable to find the lover she came to California to join, robs a bookstore and finds adventure. Another story, told by a maid, is of her mistress's revenge on her brother. Unfortunately, all the stories are disjointed, dull and senseless. It's a shame -- this author has done better. Much better.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Bad Prose, No Plot Sept. 25 2001
By Sai Li
Another example that the judges for the National Book Award are illiterate homemakers. This is one of the most boring books I've ever read. Boring introspection of demented southern belles and feminist wanna-be's. There is no innovative prose in this book, and almost no plot. The stories are mostly about one person, Rhoda, but the tone of the protagonist changes constantly. It seems like a desperate attempt on Gilchrist's part to put together a full length book. A failure for America.
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