Problems with People: Book summary and reviews of Problems with People by David Guterson

Problems with People

Stories

by David Guterson

Problems with People by David Guterson X
Problems with People by David Guterson
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  • Published in USA  Jun 2014
    176 pages
    Genre: Short Stories/Essays

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Book Summary

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. 

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"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

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Author Information

David Guterson Author Biography

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...

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