Search Results: "Jane Smiley"


BOOK REVIEW

MOO by Jane Smiley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 7, 1995

"Not as intellectually or morally challenging as the Pulitzer Prize-winner can be at her best, but Smiley coasting is still more stimulating than most writers trying their hardest."
A comic novel proves an agreeable change of pace for the ordinarily serious-minded Smiley (A Thousand Acres, 1991, etc.). Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

THE ALL-TRUE TRAVELS AND ADVENTURES OF LIDIE NEWTON by Jane Smiley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 3, 1998

"Little else goes awry, though, in the richly entertaining saga of a woman who might have been well matched with Thomas Berger's 'Little Big Man,' and whom Huck Finn would have been proud to claim as his big sister."
Smiley (Moo, 1995, etc.) scales another peak with this bighearted and thoughtful picaresque novel set mostly in the Kansas Territory shortly before the Civil War. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

EARLY WARNING by Jane Smiley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 28, 2015

"Sags a bit, as trilogy middle sections often do, but strong storytelling and a judicious number of loose ends will keep most readers looking forward to the promised third volume."
Opening with the 1953 funeral of patriarch Walter, Smiley follows the Langdon family introduced in Some Luck (2014, etc.) through its second and third generations. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

Released: Dec. 23, 1987

"Here, Smiley's words seem ultimately little more than lengthy captions for the book's 50 photographs."
A sentimental and disappointing portrait of the tribe of men and women who work with their hands. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

NON-FICTION
Released: April 20, 2004

"The surety and glow of her prose fragrantly convey the author's sensuous and protective love for horses; she's the kind of mother any foal would be lucky to have."
Novelist Smiley (Good Faith, 2003, etc.) portrays her life with horses in a text full of quirks, neuroses, personal insights, theories, and lots of polished vignettes. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

THE GREENLANDERS by Jane Smiley
Released: April 18, 1988

"A bleak, stirring picture of the slow slouch towards the death of a civilization."
Smiley (Duplicate Keys, The Age of Grief, etc.) has produced a bulky, sometimes spectacular saga of 14th-century Greenland—a tapestry of hunger, revenge and the disintegration of social institutions. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

AT PARADISE GATE by Jane Smiley
Released: Oct. 14, 1981

"Flawed work, then, but worthy, honest, and—at its best—wry and sternly moving."
Though rather too belabored and talky to match the impact of Smiley's impressive Barn Blind debut (1980), this claustrophobic, deathbed study of an edgy Des Moines family reaffirms her acute feel for silent wounds, thwarted affections, and complex domestic tensions. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

PRIVATE LIFE by Jane Smiley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: May 1, 2010

"Her most ferocious novel since the Pulitzer Prize-winning A Thousand Acres (1991) and every bit as good."
Smiley roars back from the disappointing Ten Days in the Hills (2007) with a scarifying tale of stifling marriage and traumatizing losses. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

BEST NEW AMERICAN VOICES by Jane Smiley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Oct. 1, 2005

"Impressive craftsmanship and high imaginative quality distinguish an annual that's becoming an essential."
Many roads are traveled in this sixth gathering of the best stories culled from the nation's writing programs and conferences. Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

THE AGE OF GRIEF by Jane Smiley
Released: Sept. 10, 1987

"And there is that memorable and sobering perspective—when vision changes from the far distance to the near reality of a life suddenly grown shriveled and, alas, permanently small."
Five short stories and a novella by the author of Duplicate Keys (1984) and At Paradise Gate (1981), all celebrating, in one way or another, what Smiley in the novella dubs "The Age of Grief"—that time in middle age, "after all that schooling, all that care," when coming around to you is "the same cup of pain that every mortal drinks from." Read full book review >

BOOK REVIEW

A THOUSAND ACRES by Jane Smiley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: Nov. 4, 1991

"With the Bard's peak moments—the storm, a blinding, etc.—a potent tragedy immaculate in characters, stately pace, and lowering ambiance."

BOOK REVIEW

GOOD FAITH by Jane Smiley
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: April 28, 2003

"Blunt and bold: the work of one of America's best writers."
Smiley nails the Greed Decade with her trademark precision and philosophical bite. Read full book review >