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Memory Wall: Book summary and reviews of Memory Wall by Anthony Doerr

Memory Wall

Stories

by Anthony Doerr

Memory Wall by Anthony Doerr X
Memory Wall by Anthony Doerr
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  • Published in USA  Jul 2010
    256 pages
    Genre: Short Stories/Essays

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Book Summary

Set on four continents, Anthony Doerr's new stories are about memory, the source of meaning and coherence in our lives, the fragile thread that connects us to ourselves and to others. Every hour, says Doerr, all over the globe, an infinite number of memories disappear. Yet at the same time children, surveying territory that is entirely new to them, push back the darkness, form fresh memories, and remake the world.

In the luminous and beautiful title story, a young boy in South Africa comes to possess an old woman's secret, a piece of the past with the power to redeem a life. In "The River Nemunas," a teenage orphan moves from Kansas to Lithuania to live with her grandfather, and discovers a world in which myth becomes real. "Village 113," winner of an O'Henry Prize, is about the building of the Three Gorges Dam and the seed keeper who guards the history of a village soon to be submerged. And in "Afterworld," the radiant, cathartic final story, a woman who escaped the Holocaust is haunted by visions of her childhood friends in Germany, yet finds solace in the tender ministrations of her grandson.

Every story in Memory Wall is a reminder of the grandeur of life--of the mysterious beauty of seeds, of fossils, of sturgeon, of clouds, of radios, of leaves, of the breathtaking fortune of living in this universe. Doerr's language, his witness, his imagination, and his humanity are unparalleled in fiction today.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Doerr has an incredible sense of language and a skill for crafting beautiful phrases and apt metaphors, but he doesn't always connect with his characters, a shortcoming most obvious in the first-person pieces." - Publishers Weekly

"Both readers hungry for unconventional narratives and lovers of fine writing will find much to savor in this impressive collection." - Booklist

"Starred Review. This book is a gift to the memory-impaired reader in all of us. Reading it will recharge your neurons and stimulate a few memories of its own." - Library Journal

"Doerr moves the reader gracefully from place to place...from incident to incident, and from memorable character to memorable character by focusing on small acts that have larger resonances." - Kirkus Reviews

The information about Memory Wall shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

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Author Information

Anthony Doerr Author Biography

Photo: Shauna Doerr

Anthony Doerr was born Cleveland, Ohio in 1973. Raised in nearby Novelty, Ohio, he majored in history at Bowdoin College and earned an MFA from Bowling Green State University.

Anthony Doerr is the author of the story collections Memory Wall and The Shell Collector, the novel About Grace, and the memoir Four Seasons in Rome. He has won numerous prizes both in the US and overseas, including four O. Henry Prizes, three Pushcart Prizes, the Rome Prize, the New York Public Library's Young Lions Award, the National Magazine Award for fiction, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and the Story Prize.

Doerr lives in Boise, Idaho with his wife and two sons.

Link to Anthony Doerr's Website

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