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Making It Up (original 2005; edition 2006)
References to this work on external resources.
Wikipedia in English
Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0143037846, Paperback)Making It Up, Booker Prize-winning author Penelope Lively's cleverly termed "anti-memoir," is an enthralling examination of how both fate and free will can dramatically alter the lives of each and every one of us. Each of Lively's expertly crafted stories reveals the life she could have lived, had she, or another, chosen a different path. Yet in answering a series of "what if" questions, Lively does more than indulge her imagination; rather, she challenges her readers to examine the consequences of both the significant, and the seemingly trivial decisions we make every day.
Each of the stories in Making It Up deals with a different stage of Lively's life, and examines fictional alternatives to the roads she and others traveled. The Mozambique Channel charts the course of Shirley, a British nanny who accompanies her employer's family to Capetown following the German invasion of Egypt in 1942. In reality, Lively's family emigrated to Palestine; in this alternative universe, the family encounters tragedy on the open seas. The Battle of the Imjin River sends Lively's husband off to fight in the Korean War, thus changing his fate and in turn her destiny. Most compelling of all is Comet, in which the fictional Lively's untimely death is the catalyst for a half sister's second chance at love.
At the end of most narratives, Lively makes a point of reminding readers that while these stories are fictional, they are not impossible. Perhaps is this sense of endless possibility, so expertly conveyed by this talented veteran, that makes this collection so completely riveting. In the end, we are all the ones "for whom things might have spun off elsewhere, who might have become someone else." --Gisele Toueg
(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 21 Apr 2011 05:25:16 -0400)
Penelope Lively takes moments from her own life and asks 'what if she had made other choices?'. She examines alternative destinies, choices and the moments in our lives when we could have chosen a different path.
(summary from another edition)
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