on the shelf: dear life

Dear Life by Alice Munro
ISBN-13: 9780307596888

Synopsis: "Alice Munro’s peerless ability to give us the essence of a life in often brief but always spacious and timeless stories is once again everywhere apparent in this brilliant new collection. In story after story, she illumines the moment a life is forever altered by a chance encounter or an action not taken, or by a simple twist of fate that turns a person out of his or her accustomed path and into a new way of being or thinking. A poet, finding herself in alien territory at her first literary party, is rescued by a seasoned newspaper columnist, and is soon hurtling across the continent, young child in tow, toward a hoped-for but completely unplanned meeting. A young soldier, returning to his fiancée from the Second World War, steps off the train before his stop and onto the farm of another woman, beginning a life on the move. A wealthy young woman having an affair with the married lawyer hired by her father to handle his estate comes up with a surprising way to deal with the blackmailer who finds them out."
Review: This is the first time I have read anything by Alice Munro. I'd heard good things about Runway, which I will review in the future, but I wanted to read her latest. Alice Munro literally reaches into your chest and pulls your heart out. That is how power she is at storytelling. I was hooked from the very beginning. I was in awe at how much of a story she could tell in as little as thirty pages. It's hard to describe the way she writes, except that it is very straight forward. The words aren't necessarily the most sophisticated, but the way she utilizes common vocabulary to weave an intricate web of a story is something unique that I have never before read. She has quickly become a favorite author after reading this and Runaway. I purchased Vintage Munro and am waiting for Selected Stories to come in (just ordered it yesterday). If one book of short stories can influence me in such a way as to declare her one of my favorite authors, than this is a powerful read. Read it and have your heart ripped out, too!


  1. I've only read one Alice Munro short story but it was so heart wrenching it's stuck with me. Maybe it's time to check out more of her work!

    1. Definitely. If you're looking for something to pull you in, definitely check out more Munro.