Friday, May 9, 2014

Dear Great Book Guru,  I just finished reading  Sea Cliff author Charles Hansmann’s latest collection of poems- APOSTASY OF THE WAYLESS POET.  I enjoyed it very much and friends have told me that Alice Munro’s short stories have a similar appeal. Have you read either of these authors ?  Poet Partisan

Dear Poet Partisan,  I too am a great fan of Hansmann’s poetry  and actually I just finished an early short story  collection of the 2013 Nobel Prize Winner Alice Munro’s – THE MOONS OF JUPITER but I don’t see a strong connection  between these two authors.  In almost all of Munro’s stories, the main character is a woman approaching forty, well educated, self-aware, and struggling with memories long buried.  Frequently these memories appear to be faulty causing her to reconsider decisions made and judgments rendered. In the last of twelve stories from which the collection gets its title, the woman reminisces with her elderly dying father and she sees in their troubled relationship startling similarities to problems she has with her daughters.  The stories are told in a circular format rather than linear- just as its many moons all circle Jupiter.   Set in rural Canada, the stories are beautifully written in streams of consciousness with characters’ lives coming into focus as they move back in forth through time.

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