The BookBrowse Review

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The BookBrowse Review

Published May 21, 2014

ISSN: 1930-0018

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Contents

In This Edition of
The BookBrowse Review

Highlighting indicates debut books

Editor's Introduction
Reviews
Hardcovers Paperbacks
First Impressions
Recommended for Book Clubs
Publishing Soon

Novels


Historical Fiction


Short Stories/Essays


Mysteries


Thrillers


Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Alternate History


Biographies/Memoirs


History, Science & Current Affairs


Young Adults

Novels


Romance


Extras
  • Blog:
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  • Quote:
    A library is thought in cold storage
Book Jacket

Problems with People
Stories
by David Guterson
3 Jun 2014
176 pages
Publisher: Knopf
ISBN-13: 9780385351485
Critics:
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Ten sharply observed, funny, and wise new stories from the best-selling author of Snow Falling on Cedars: stunning explorations of the mysteries of love and our complex desire for connection.

Ranging from youth to old age, the voices that inhabit Problems with People offer tender, unexpected, and always tightly focused accounts of our quest to understand each other, individually, and as part of a political and historical moment. These stories are shot through with tragedy - the long-ago loss of a young boyfriend, a son's death at sea; poignant reflections upon cultural and personal circumstances - whether it is being Jewish, overweight and single, or a tourist in a history-haunted land; and paradigmatic questions about our sense of reality and belonging. Spanning diverse geographies - all across America, and in countries as distant as Nepal and South Africa - these stories showcase David Guterson's signature gifts for characterization, psychological nuance, emotional and moral suspense, and evocations of small-town life and the natural world. They celebrate the ordinary yet brightening surprises that lurk within the dramas of our daily lives, as well as the return of a contemporary American master to the form that launched his astonishing literary career. 

"Starred Review. Deeply affecting... A haunting collection from a thoughtful storyteller." - Library Journal

"Succinct, ambitious... Guterson reminds us of the boundless potential of everyday encounters." - Publishers Weekly

"Guterson is celebrated for his deeply atmospheric novels, and his electrifying short fiction is equally expressive." - Booklist

"Some of the best stories in this uneven collection suggest a return to form for a writer better known for his novels.Guterson's first story collection in 15 years should appeal to fans of his debut novel (Snow Falling on Cedars, 1994) who might have found the dark, antic humor of his most recent one (Ed King, 2011) jarring." - Kirkus

David Guterson was born in Seattle in 1956. His father, Murray Guterson, is a distinguished criminal defense lawyer: "One of the things I heard [from him] early on was to find something you love to do--before you think about money or anything else. The other thing was to do something that you feel has a positive impact on the world."

Guterson received his M.A. from the University of Washington, where he studied under the writer Charles Johnson. It was there that he developed his ideas about the moral function of literature: "Fiction writers shouldn't dictate to people what their morality should be," he said in a recent interview. "Yet not enough writers are presenting moral questions for reflection, which I think is a very important obligation."

After moving to Bainbridge Island in Puget Sound, Guterson taught English at the local high school and began writing journalism for Sports Illustrated and Harper's magazine, where he is now a contributing editor. His books include a collection of short stories, The Country Ahead of Us, the Country Behind, Family Matters: Why Homeschooling Makes Sense, and Snow Falling on Cedars, which won the 1995 PEN/Faulkner Award, Our Lady of The Forest, and The Other.

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