Even if I wasn't already a fan of Maile Meloy's writing, I would have read Both Ways Is the Only Way I Want It for the title alone. In the collection's penultimate story, a conflicted husband reflects on a poem by A.R. Ammons ("One can't/have it/both ways/and both/ways is/the only/way I/want it"). He lies curled up with his wife of three decades, comforted by her intelligence and aging beauty, while he contemplates leaving her for the recently-teenaged girl who taught their now-grown children how to swim: "The force with which he wanted it both ways made him grit his teeth. What kind of fool wanted it only one way?" Each of the eleven stories poses this same question, as affairs, marriages, and childhoods teeter on the edge of decision: go or stay, live it up or keep on living. None of the characters are terribly likeable, but their interior conflicts make us feel for them, even as we ...
BookBrowse's reviews and backstories are a members-only benefit. Full information is available on books for a limited time when they are featured as "Editor's Choices" - but that time has now elapsed for this book.click to join
Members read and review books ahead
of publication. See what they think
in First Impressions!
Visitors can view a lot of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only
Use what talents you possess: The woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best.
Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!
Solve this clue:
and be entered to win..
Books thatinspire you.Handpicked.
Books you'll stay up all night reading; books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, books that will expand your mind and inspire you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.