Monday, June 7, 2021

Open Secrets - Alice Munro

 Alice Munro won the Nobel Prize for Literature and she only writes short stories. In 'Open Secrets' she presents eight short stories - Carried Away, A Real Life, The Albanian Virgin, The Jack Randa Hotel, A Wilderness Station, Spaceships Have Landed and Vandals.

 haven't  read anything like this before and the stories require tremendous concentration and perhaps a re-read and like I saw on the net, even a guide on how-to. The prose goes back and forth in time, switches mediums, people, places. She provides twists when least expected, leaves us wondering what it was all about in the end. Astonishing.

The first story Carried Away, about the librarian and the soldier she falls in love with who marries some other girl and his death by decapitation, and the way his boss gathers his head and puts it back goes along as matter-of-factly as Orr's death in Catch 22. Ot the Albanian virgin, the woman abducted by a tribe who wants to marry her off but where she has a chance to remain a  virgin and live like a man. The lasy who follows her husband to Australia and poses like a woman he is writing letters to in Jack Randa Hotel. Complex stories, complex people.

Need to read the stories again. Ten years down the line. Thanks Vinod bhai.    

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