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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
By A Customer
Ellen Gilchrist has been shocking and inspiring readers of her short story collections and novels for more than a decade. Victory Over Japan is her second book and a perfect entry into the world of deep, funny, and dangerous women and the men who love them. Gilchrist herself is a walking whirlwind of insights and inconsistencies and her characters (rumored to be thinly veiled portraits of herself and her family) display her wit and grace in every line. The men are strong and rich, the women are beautiful and lucky, stepping into the next adventure with a hair-raising "Whyyy not?!"

Gilchrist paints a wide canvas of experiences. We are treated to southern characters whose eccentricities transcend stereotype. The really good news is the characters and their families continue and grow throughout her books. Like eating Belgian chocolates, reading Ellen Gilchrist's Victory Over Japan will be exhilirating, satisfying, and leave you eager for the next delicious encounter.
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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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5.0 out of 5 stars Emotionally Invigorating Feb. 16 1998
By A Customer
This book was very exciting. It made me feel happy,and sad all at the same time. Gilchrist played on every emotion throughout the entire book. With each introduction of a character, she showed the humorous and serious side of them. The women had serious issue with men that they cleverly sought revenge on.This made the book very clever and surpriseing. I had no idea what Crystal was going to do next. I really enjoyed reading this book to find out what was going to happen next.
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