Sunday, March 30, 2008

Book Review: High Lonesome

High Lonesome: Selected Stories 1966-2006 by Joyce Carol Oates

I will be direct. I like this writing very much. I feel a kinship with her methods and approach, and of course the darkness within her stories. It is funny when reading many of the stories, I was simply waiting for things to go horribly wrong. And they tended to do so. I am partial to stories about degenerates, perverts, murderers, and plain ol' bad luck. And it was only when Oates ventured away from this formula that I struggled.

A lengthy story in this already lengthy collection of 660 pages, "My Warsawza: 1980," was an adventure and torturous. It seemed like an attempt to deal with more substantial (less titillating) subject matter, but it wanders without the normal road map.

I enjoyed these stories very much and am encouraged to read more of her work. And also I am reminded of Flannery O'Connor and must read her stories again.

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