Bluebeard's Egg and Other Stories
By (author) Margaret Atwood
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Bluebeard's Egg and Other Stories by Margaret Atwood
Book DescriptionA man finds himself surrounded by women who are becoming paler, more silent and literally smaller; a woman's intimate life is strangely dominated by the fear of nuclear warfare; a melancholy teenage love is swept away by a hurricane, while a tired, middle-aged affection is rekindled by the spectacle of rare Jamaican birds...In these exceptional short stories, by turns funny and searingly honest, Margaret Atwood captures brilliantly the complex forces that govern our relationships, and the powerful emotions that guide them.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780099741213
(198mm x 129mm x 18mm)
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Publish Date: 3-Jan-1998
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Margaret Atwood
View all books by Margaret Atwood
UK Kirkus Review » Atwood's novels are such towering achievements that it's easy to forget she is equally at home with poetry and short stories. This is a reissue of what is probably the best of her three collections of stories: sly, wise and witty. Her heroines are by turns uncertain, vengeful and even dangerous, from Loulou, the sturdy sculptor whose life is made a misery by a selection of over-erudite poets, to Becka who is driven to take revenge on a faithless lover by means of a tragicomic assault on his pet cat. The title story, with its echoes of fairy tale, is particularly telling: an incisive portrait of the defences constructed by a couple neither happily nor unhappily married. A must-read for Atwood fans. (Kirkus UK)
US Kirkus Review » Atwood (Life Before Man, Bodily Harm, The Handmaid's Tale, etc.) here adds two new stories to a collection first published in her native Canada in 1983. Together, these 12 lackluster tales give little indication of her proven talents as novelist and poet. If the dullness seems uncharacteristic, little else is. Atwood peoples her stories with familiar types - artists, political activists, middle-aged professionals, housewives - and subjects them to the vicissitudes of contemporary domestic relationships. In "Loulou; or, The Domestic Life of the Language," the earth-mother of the title, a productive potter by trade, supports a houseful of male poets, all of whom were either her lover or husband at one time or another, and none of whom seems to respect her for much more than her willingness to look after them. "Uglypuss" pokes fun at the efforts of a radical couple to maintain a politically correct approach to modern love. Other stories concern marriages that are either fragile ("Scarlet Ibis"), foundering (the title piece), or undergoing redefinition ("The Salt Garden"). "Two Stories About Emma" profiles a courageous woman who fancies herself invulnerable, while "The Sunrise" proves that another woman's "slightly weird behavior" - she's an artist who approaches strange men on the street to pose for her - barely compensates for a life without love. The best story, "Spring Song of the Frogs," follows Will, a fellow who's "not very good at relationships," and who manages to bring out the anorexic in a number of women, including a niece who's hospitalized for not eating and an old girlfriend who sneaks off to purge a romantic dinner. Four anecdotal pieces, full of "significant moments," record memories of the narrator's parents and provide some fascinating glimpses into Canadian provincial life. Through most of Atwood's undistinguished second collection of short fiction runs her feminist sense of angst and alienation; occasional stabs at mitigating humor mostly miss their mark. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - Margaret Atwood
Margaret Atwood is Canada's most eminent novelist, poet and critic. Her books include The Edible Woman, Surfacing, Lady Oracle, Life Before Man, Bodily Harm, The Handmaid's Tale (winner of both the Arthur C. Clarke Award for Science Fiction and the Governor-General's Award, shortlisted for the Booker Prize and made into a major film). Cat's Eye (also shortlisted for the Booker Prize) The Robber Bride and Alias Grace. Finally, The Blind Assassin won the Booker Prize in 2000.
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