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The Purple Swamp Hen and Other Stories by Penelope Lively

The Purple Swamp Hen and Other Stories

  • Hardcover $25.00

    May 09, 2017 | 208 Pages

  • Ebook $12.99

    May 09, 2017 | 208 Pages

Product Details


Praise for The Purple Swamp Hen and Other Stories

“Impressive, surprising, and fun.”
—Boris Kachka, New York Magazine

“Lively’s productivity has been so steady and reliable that she is sometimes taken a little for granted. In this country she is not nearly as well-known as she ought to be. . . . Her prose is sharp, precise, perfectly pitched, but shrinks from flashiness. . . . Her books just get crisper and more tightly controlled.”
—Charles McGrath, The New York Times Book Review

“How well do we ever know another person? That’s the leitmotif of this witty but piercing new collection by Man Booker winner Lively. . . .  Even in her darkest tales, Lively’s fundamentally serious take on our tangled emotional lives is never bleak, merely ruefully accepting. A treasure trove of fictional gems.”
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“Lively struts her stuff in this collection of delectably acerbic and canny short stories. In gin-and-tonic prose, Lively, steeped in history and fluent in English conventions, is keenly forensic when it comes to the nature of hypocrisy and stoicism, secrecy and lies. . . . . Lively, perfect for fans of the Margarets Atwood and Drabble, as well as Shirley Jackson, neatly tracks class divides, the fizzling of marriages, and a long-brewing rivalry. Droll fables and mordant ghost stories round out this adroitly wise and mischievous gathering.”

“The same measured intelligence and subtle humor that characterizes Lively’s novels is present in this story collection. The stories often bear rereading, as Lively’s quiet elegance rolls by so smoothly. . . . Effortless and masterly.”
Publishers Weekly

Praise for Penelope Lively

“Lively writes with an astringent blend of sympathy and detachment, emotional wisdom and satiric wit.”
—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times

“One of our most talented writers.”
The New York Times Book Review

“A consummate storyteller.”
—The Seattle Times

“In her own late seventies now, with a legion of regular readers and newcomers with every book, Lively continues to surprise and illuminate, writing to ever more dazzling effect.”
The Boston Globe

“Witty, gentle-humored, sharp . . . Lively is a keen observer and an engaging narrator.”
—NPR’s All Things Considered

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