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The Love Object: Selected Stories of Edna…
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The Love Object: Selected Stories of Edna O'Brien

by Edna O'Brien

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3.5 Edna O'Brien is an author I have always wanted to read but until now never have. Her first book Country Girls was banned in Ireland upon its release for its depiction of female sexuality. Her writing is elegantly descriptive and though their are a few stories I didn't really care for, there were some I absolutely loved.

The rug was one, a rug is unexpectedly delivered to a family, or is a beautiful purple rig and they spend time trying to guess who has sent this rug that they now all loves to them. There is of course s catch but it would a spoiler to tell you the rest. In another a young country girl is thrilled to be invited to her first party, but finds out things are not as she thought. And of course the mother, daughter story which I am always drawn too.

A wonderful collection of stories of want, love and failed expectations. Now I need to get my hands on Country Girls.

ARC from publisher. ( )
1 vote Beamis12 | May 14, 2015 |
Understated, introspective and low-keyed stories. Not so much sensual (as the cover blurb says), but definitely shimmering.
One story which stands out in its pessimism is "Irish Revel", which I understood to be semi-autobiographical and which shows how low people can sink in their treatment of the weaker members of society. A really depressing story, but taken altogether, a good collection. ( )
3 vote donital | Nov 27, 2010 |
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Epigraph
As matter desires form

so woman desires man

ARISTOTLE
Dedication
for Francis Wyndham
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He simply said my name. He said 'Martha' and once again I could feel it happening.
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There are two collections of stories with confusingly similar titles - The Love Object and other stories is a collection from 1968, and the more recent The Love Object - Selected Stories (published by Faber) in 2013.
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The thirty-one stories collected in this volume provide, among other things, a cumulative portrait of Ireland, seen from within and without. Coming of age, the impact of class, and familial and romantic love are the prevalent motifs, along with the instinct toward escape and subsequent nostalgia for home. Some of the stories are linked and some carry O'Brien's distinct sense of the comical. In "A Rose in the Heart of New York," the single-mindedness of love dramatically derails the relationship between a girl and her mother, while in "Sister Imelda" and "The Creature" the strong ties between teacher and student and mother and son are ultimately broken. "The Love Object" recounts a passionate affair between the narrator and her older lover. The magnificent, mid-career title story from Lantern Slides portrays a Dublin dinner party that takes on the lives and loves of all the guests. More recent stories include "Shovel Kings" and "Old Wounds," which follows the revival and demise of the friendship between two elderly cousins.… (more)

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