She Was Like That New and Selected Stories review ✓ 3

She Was Like That New and Selected Stories

review She Was Like That New and Selected Stories

From Kate Walbert the highly acclaimed National Book Award nominee comes a dazzling career spanning collection of new and selected stories about the trials of womanhood and the vulnerabilities of motherhood In these deft acutely funny heartbreaking stories Kate Walbert delves into the hearts and minds of women in the age of anxiety Her characters are uneasy in one way or another; they. Thank you to Scribner NetGalley for a free e arc of She Was Like That for reviewI leapt at the chance to reuest an early copy of Kate Walbert's collection of stories because I really liked His Favorites published last year I don't recall the experience of reading that book to be as anxiety inducing as reading this collectionThroughout it felt to me that the stories were about the feeling of being alone and of trying to make sense of things Grief pain confusion trauma these pop up continually to the extent that at times the stories ran together for me ie I'm not sure I could distinguish between some of the main characters And that might be the point that all women encounter such difficulties and feel such ways That although our circumstances may be uniue we have such shared experienceThe focus in this collection is on women who aren't poor I interpreted them as occupying the range from lower to upper middle class Many of the main characters also are mothers the relationships both with their children and their own mothers are explored Race if I'm remembering correctly was only mentioned once identifying a woman's hired help as blackI like that She Was Like That is part of a larger conversation beginning about the often emotional labor women take on I did like some of the stories better than others while some were just okay others were so deeply felt Content warning suicide mental illness substance abuse autism eating disorders

characters Ò eBook or Kindle ePUB ☆ Kate Walbert

All yearn for connection; they all struggle to find meaning in their lives as mothers wives and daughters; they all try to find their own voices often within isolated and isolating circumstances In the dazzling opening story “MM World” a mother is plunged into panic when she briefly loses one of her daughters at the Times Suare store In “Slow the Heart” a mother tries to ease. Note to selfno Kate Walbert This is a third book I’ve read of hers two novels and now a collection of short stories than an adeuate sampling by any standards and her writing just really doesn’t work for me And to be fair I’m completely willing to admit this isn’t entirely author’s fault or possibly not even at all there is definitely such a thing as a lack of authorreader chemistry and this is most likely it Walbert is a well respected and acclaimed author I’m sure she has her readership Although it stands to mention possibly not a very devoted one since I’m the first person on GR to review this book and I’m definitely not at all a fan I would also be absolutely willing to admit that she isn’t without talent it’s mainly about how indifferent her talent leaves me She writes women’s fiction very much estrogen driven stories about and for women but her protagonists never really come alive for me no matter how nice the language gets there’s always an emotional distance from which these stories are viewed and from that perspective they leave a lot to be desired So even if intellectually I was able to appreciate Walbert’s storytelling abilities I just didn’t care about the stories she was telling Maybe it reuires a different audience to be appreciated somewhere along the lines of a white upper middle class possibly New Yorkers early to middle age women of a certain mindset with heavy concentration of the trials of motherhood That’s entirely possible It’s just really outside of my realm of interest And so no Walbert for me Really the best thing about this book was how uick it went by but even stillnothing to show for the time spent Pass Thanks Netgalley

Kate Walbert ☆ 3 characters

Tension at the dinner table with Roses and Thorns the game she knows the Obamas played in the White House In “Radical Feminists” a woman skating with her two children encounters the man who derailed her career a decade earlier And in the story “A Mother Is Someone Who Tells Jokes” a grieving mother reflects on the kindergarten project that preceded her son’s autism diagnosi. A NYTS Notable Book of the Year Perhaps the best place to start reading Kate Walbert's fine collection is with Do Something a strong stand alone story which is also the author's reworking of Dover 2003 from her remarkably intricate novel A Short History of WomenA NYTS Ten Best Books of 2009 Here Walbert has torued and updated the original giving us the same yet not uite the same tale Perhaps the best place to finish the collection is with the final story Radical Feminists a masterful evocation of the power of past injustice and injury to intrude like a nightmare into the present As in the best of Kate Walbert's writing in these stories there is an underlying tension palpable yet just below the surface like an itch the reader cannot uite scratch Another impressive volume from a writer at the height of her craft and creative powers 23 Weihnachts-Tiergeschichten reflects on the kindergarten project that preceded her son’s autism diagnosi. A NYTS Notable Book of the Year Perhaps the best place to start Messy Jessy reading Kate Walbert's fine collection is with Do Something a strong stand alone story which is also the author's The International Dictionary of Event Management reworking of Dover 2003 from her Domicile 1 remarkably intricate novel A Short History of WomenA NYTS Ten Best Books of 2009 Here Walbert has torued and updated the original giving us the same yet not uite the same tale Perhaps the best place to finish the collection is with the final story Radical Feminists a masterful evocation of the power of past injustice and injury to intrude like a nightmare into the present As in the best of Kate Walbert's writing in these stories there is an underlying tension palpable yet just below the surface like an itch the Individual Motivation Within Groups reader cannot uite scratch Another impressive volume from a writer at the height of her craft and creative powers


10 thoughts on “She Was Like That New and Selected Stories

  1. says:

    I am the perfect audience for this book Middle aged young kids daily asking myself how I ended up where I am etc but I didnt find myself itching to pick this book back up after putting it down While I did finish it and identified with many of the slices of life highlighted in each story it just didn't do much for me Im happy to try out a novel by the author maybe it was the form that held the writing back


  2. says:

    A collection of short stories about stay at home moms usually living in New York City with anxiety who encounter interesting people than themselves Meh None of the stories stood out or made an impression Even the writing was just okI received a copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest reviewTheme 1 starsWritingProse 3 stars


  3. says:

    Thank you to Scribner NetGalley for a free e arc of She Was Like That for reviewI leapt at the chance to reuest an early copy of Kate Walbert's collection of stories because I really liked His Favorites published last year I don't recall the experience of reading that book to be as anxiety inducing as reading this collectionThroughout it felt to me that the stories were about the feeling of being alone and of trying to make sense of things Grief pain confusion trauma these pop up continually to the extent that at times the stories ran together for me ie I'm not sure I could distinguish between some of the main characters And that might be the point that all women encounter such difficulties and feel such ways That although our circumstances may be uniue we have such shared experienceThe focus in this collection is on women who aren't poor I interpreted them as occupying the range from lower to upper middle class Many of the main characters also are mothers the relationships both with their children and their own mothers are explored Race if I'm remembering correctly was only mentioned once identifying a woman's hired help as blackI like that She Was Like That is part of a larger conversation beginning about the often emotional labor women take on I did like some of the stories better than others while some were just okay others were so deeply felt Content warning suicide mental illness substance abuse autism eating disorders


  4. says:

    Note to selfno Kate Walbert This is a third book I’ve read of hers two novels and now a collection of short stories than an adeuate sampling by any standards and her writing just really doesn’t work for me And to be fair I’m completely willing to admit this isn’t entirely author’s fault or possibly not even at all there is definitely such a thing as a lack of authorreader chemistry and this is most likely it Walbert is a well respected and acclaimed author I’m sure she has her readership Although it stands to mention possibly not a very devoted one since I’m the first person on GR to review this book and I’m definitely not at all a fan I would also be absolutely willing to admit that she isn’t without talent it’s mainly about how indifferent her talent leaves me She writes women’s fiction very much estrogen driven stories about and for women but her protagonists never really come alive for me no matter how nice the language gets there’s always an emotional distance from which these stories are viewed and from that perspective they leave a lot to be desired So even if intellectually I was able to appreciate Walbert’s storytelling abilities I just didn’t care about the stories she was telling Maybe it reuires a different audience to be appreciated somewhere along the lines of a white upper middle class possibly New Yorkers early to middle age women of a certain mindset with heavy concentration of the trials of motherhood That’s entirely possible It’s just really outside of my realm of interest And so no Walbert for me Really the best thing about this book was how uick it went by but even stillnothing to show for the time spent Pass Thanks Netgalley


  5. says:

    He sees the author of literary fiction on the other side a cafe wrapped in a tasteful blue cardigan and hunched over her laptop as inappropriate verbs evanesce through her fingers She is no doubt stitching together plotless short stories out of pretentious analogies like a Spartan widow weaving a shroud for her husband felled on the plains of Thermopylae She sweeps one dirty blonde lock of her tastefully bobbed hair off her forehead before finishing another sentence that meanders past the limit of most readers' attention spans perhaps elongating it with an unnecessary clause as is the custom for some writers but not for others or maybe a highbrow cultural allusion at at which her literary idol Virginia Woolf might have scoffed Oh well he imagines her surmising as her lips purse to a slightly warped line near the base of her oval face no metaphor is too melodramatic in the uest to aestheticize the mundane the steam wafting from her cappuccino vapors rising from beneath the temple of Delphi Beyond her workday Gotham ebbs past the cafe window in a Stygian stream of brown overcoats and black wool pullovers With a tremor as delicate as the glissando in a John Coltrane solo he realizes that his her presence in a Midtown Manhattan cafe is roughly as surprising as that of a cactus in a desert or a jellyfish in the Sargasso Sea; she is a specialized organism who can only function in certain environments as incapable of imagining a life not spent among the East Coast neurotics as a penguin is of contemplating life as a Vegas showgirl He rises crosses the cafe propelled by nothing he can explain not unlike the characters in her stories Ms Walbert?She raises her thoughtful intelligent face to him her confusion expressing itself through a reluctant smile Yes?I hate your writingHe exits


  6. says:

    Chock full of middle aged mothers’ melancholy Maybe would be better if not read during a pandemic


  7. says:

    Kate Walbert’s short stories remind me of a girl I knew in high school beautiful and smart undoubtedly so but also a bit mysterious and unknowable I’d leave conversations with her thinking I’m pretty sure I followed all that maybe but boy is she pretty Walbert’s pretty takes several forms She creates characters of interest and depth with shockingly few words She touches on motherhood loss companionship and loss of companionship with the utmost credibility and relatability And then there’s her prose Walbert’s descriptive turns of phrase are as evocative as they are precise the prettiest of the pretty“She could barely look at him He was all secrets; they slid around beneath his expression like tectonic plates He was all the things he wouldn’t say to her that she wanted to know ”“We drove into downtown Rochester fast through yellow lights just changed to red” “I can tell you that there will be times when you have to choose between beginning again in a cold and lonely place or making do with whatever fragile shelter you have already built”“Her scalp burns The dye has seeped into the gray roots something about opened follicles and covered the gray like so many shovels of dirt on a patch of bright white snow”“She wants to be a person who sees who believes in things like Bigfoot or God”“Charles had linked his arm in hers and led her down the stone walk breaking away only to open her door of the station wagon to bend with a flourishy bow as if earlier the station wagon were a pumpkin and he a mouse”“‘Wow’ she says turning to Sharon ‘You are so nice’ she says ‘Really’ she says as if someone has disagreed slamming the car door shut like at any moment Sharon Peterson will change her mind”“‘Exactly’ Sharon says slowing to comply with the light the radio on the station Fred Vegas has suggested no one voting news please never again news the music jazzy a breeze saxophone or clarinet or French horn Sharon eyes the corralled automobiles behind her a temporary nervous peace all of them eager to accelerate again to get there” “Maggie had listened as Will shifted in his seat to sneak a look at his phone For this she will never forgive him”“She would find his miniature warriors everywhere assaulting a sock scaling the Ping Pong table plastic molded men with clearly defined weaponry and indistinct faces”


  8. says:

    In She Was Like That Kate Walbert offers readers short stories covering a wide range of topics They all share a woman's need for connection for finding her place and purpose in the overall scheme of things for trying to make sense of her situation for trying trying trying to bury her anxieties and fears and move on With that overall theme this book should rank high with me but it doesn't While some of the characters drew me in for the most part I felt a sense of being held at a distance of isolation This surprised me as I was expectinghoping for just the opposite Many thanks to NetGalley and Scribner for allowing me to read an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review Publication date for this book is currently set for 10119


  9. says:

    A NYTS Notable Book of the Year Perhaps the best place to start reading Kate Walbert's fine collection is with Do Something a strong stand alone story which is also the author's reworking of Dover 2003 from her remarkably intricate novel A Short History of WomenA NYTS Ten Best Books of 2009 Here Walbert has torued and updated the original giving us the same yet not uite the same tale Perhaps the best place to finish the collection is with the final story Radical Feminists a masterful evocation of the power of past injustice and injury to intrude like a nightmare into the present As in the best of Kate Walbert's writing in these stories there is an underlying tension palpable yet just below the surface like an itch the reader cannot uite scratch Another impressive volume from a writer at the height of her craft and creative powers


  10. says:

    Follow me on Instagram bookmarkedbya instagramcombookmarkedbya and see the full review at my blog Thanks to Scribner for the free review copyA wide ranging collection of touching and observant short stories centered around woman and motherhoodSummarizing a short story collection is difficult and reviewing one is even so That said here’s what I know this is an easily accessible collection of short stories most of which have clear plots and meanings something I find lacking and detrimentally so in many collections of short stories These stories are contemporary likable and honest dealing largely with the mundanities of everyday life for women mothers and daughters I only felt particularly moved by and connected to about half the stories The collection starts strong peaks in the middle and ends strong leaving the rest of the stories by the wayside That said each of Walbert's stories was entertaining honest and I was easily able to identify with many of them While I only connected with a handful I enjoyed each If you're a fan of short stories with less complicated nuance but just as much depth I do recommend this collection to you


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