May You Live in Interesting Times

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University of Iowa Press, 1995 - Fiction - 163 pages
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Obsession, adultery, infidelity, unrequited love, suicide, betrayal, death--Tereze Gluck's clear-sighted characters coolly assess their actions and reactions. When a man's wife dies suddenly, he feels liberated, and learning this stuns him. Taking a leap into personhood, a child watching her mother in the garden experiences empathy. A woman addicted to a lover realizes how she has squandered herself. A kiss in a taxicab sets two people on the road to inevitability. Scars, even small ones, reflect the power and mystery of the roads people take from one life into another. In the intense title story, suicide, long-distance love, and a cat's nine lives overshadow a woman's subterranean life.

Gluck's wry and rueful stories chronicle her characters' struggles to tell the truth regardless of where that might lead them. Insistent, stubbornly spirited voices inform these tales; Gluck's characters dig in their heels and announce, for good or ill, "This is who I am." In the end their moral integrity forces them to come face to face with themselves. At the intersection where these insightful stories take place, what is in one's heart and what one reveals to the world converge. Each story is a resonant act of self-discovery for both writer and reader.

 

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MAY YOU LIVE IN INTERESTING TIMES

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

The Iowa Short Fiction Award winner's debut offers much take- off time but no lift. Of the 21 pieces here, few will remain long in the reader's memoryand fewer be movingdue in part to the author's ... Read full review

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Contents

Sunrise
1
A Cuban Girl
4
Yellow Light
12
The House in the Woods
18
Gone Fishing
26
Bill Hilgendorff
31
The Fabric of Society
47
Mexico
50
On the Plain
81
Amor Fati
85
The Man in the Snow
98
Arson
104
Ansels Mother
108
The Dance Floor
117
May You Live in Interesting Times
123
I Was Expecting a Letter
144

Oceanic Hotel Nice
55
Praise
69
Essence and Quintessence
74
The Blue Iris
150
We Never Look Up
158
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