Thursday 18 April 2013

Friend of My Youth

I've read Alice Munro before - and written about her - so I know how good she is. But nothing of hers that I've read so far has hit me with quite the force of the title story of her collection Friend Of My Youth, which I read (and reread) yesterday. The impact reminded me of Delmore Schwartz's In Dreams Begin Responsibilities, with which indeed it has a certain amount in common - the painful, thwarted parent-child relationship, the dream element, the story within a story, even the resonant last sentence. Nabokov reckoned In Dreams to be the greatest short story of the 20th century...
You can apparently read Friend of My Youth here, with a bald and reductive introduction that gives little idea of its riches.

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