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Maile Meloy

Author of The Apothecary

13+ Works 4,142 Members 226 Reviews 6 Favorited

About the Author

Maile Meloy was born in Helena, Montana on January 1, 1972. She received a bachelor's degree from Harvard College and an M.F.A. in fiction from the University of California, Irvine. Her works include Liars and Saints, A Family Daughter, and The Apothecary. She has won numerous awards including The show more Paris Review's Aga Khan Prize for Fiction for her story, Aqua Boulevard, in 2001; the PEN/Malamud Award for Half in Love in 2003; and the California Book Awards Silver Medal for Fiction for Both Ways Is the Only Way I Want It. She has also received the Rosenthal Foundation Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2004. In 2007, she was chosen as one of Granta's 21 Best Young American Novelists. (Bowker Author Biography) show less

Includes the names: Maile Meloy, maile melloy


Works by Maile Meloy

The Apothecary (2011) 1,228 copies
Liars and Saints (2003) 633 copies
Do Not Become Alarmed (2017) 558 copies
The Apprentices (2013) 309 copies
A Family Daughter (2007) 285 copies
Half in Love : Stories (2002) 236 copies
The After-Room (2015) 121 copies
The Octopus Escapes (2021) 63 copies
Devotion: A Rat Story (2015) 28 copies

Associated Works

xo Orpheus: Fifty New Myths (2013) — Contributor — 273 copies
The Best American Short Stories 2015 (2015) — Contributor — 222 copies
Granta 97: Best of Young American Novelists 2 (2007) — Contributor — 196 copies
The Ecco Anthology of Contemporary American Short Fiction (2008) — Contributor — 122 copies
Best New American Voices 2000 (2000) — Contributor — 46 copies
The Best of Montana's Short Fiction (2004) — Contributor — 20 copies


1950s (24) 2011 (14) 21st century (19) adventure (69) alchemy (39) American (24) ARC (15) California (17) Central America (17) children's (23) Cold War (69) contemporary fiction (19) England (36) espionage (30) family (52) fantasy (146) fiction (358) friendship (19) historical (19) historical fiction (54) kidnapping (16) Kindle (15) literature (18) London (34) magic (68) middle grade (31) Montana (13) mystery (35) novel (28) own (19) read (32) romance (17) series (17) short stories (157) spy (38) suspense (15) to-read (303) unread (17) YA (41) young adult (48)

Common Knowledge



A while ago I said I was I taking a break from reading books about middle-class, middle-aged marriages and their discontents, but with this collection of short stories I'm back.

Meloy's perfectly written stories are about yearning and frustration (which, we all know, are the essential themes of middle-class, middle-age life, even if you're not married--or middle-aged). Sad as the stories were, I admired the writing and insight tremendously.

My favorite story, and probably the most lighthearted, was "Lilliana," wherein a rich old grandma comes back from the dead, but not really.

Finally, the title of the book, taken from a poem by A.R. Ammons, really does sum it up well. To quote one of the stories, "The force with which he wanted it both ways made him grit his teeth. What kind of fool wanted it only one way?"
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LibrarianDest | 33 other reviews | Jan 3, 2024 |
The narration was a little jumpy at times, which makes sense, but was difficult to follow sometimes when listening to on audiobook.
Danielle.Desrochers | 30 other reviews | Oct 10, 2023 |
This YA book was an adventure set initially in the USA during the 1950's era of anti-communist McCarthyism. The story quickly moves to London, UK where the Scott family travels to escape persecution as alleged communists. The 2 main protagonists (Benjamin and Janie) embark on a mission to outwit Soviet agents and free Ben's kidnapped father.

While the plot's plausibility is questionable, the story is intriguing and the adventure is definitely engaging with a fair amount of quirky and suspenseful episodes. The rules of alchemy are observed, albeit a bit deceptively, in the process of using medicinal plants in the London from the physic garden to make 'magic' elixirs.
The middle-grade students can enjoy a story here with lots of imagination and learn some history which is presented very unobtrusively.
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SandyAMcPherson | 83 other reviews | Jul 23, 2023 |
Maile Meloy's prose is tight and functional, and can hit like a fist. The first story in this collection, about a lonesome ranch hand who meets and tries to kindle a relationship with a woman from a town 9 hours away, struck me with its emotional realism. Infidelity is a motif in many of these stories, and it grew harder to sympathize with the cheating, selfish husbands that populate Meloy's pages.
jonbrammer | 33 other reviews | Jul 1, 2023 |



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