Reviews

Delicate Edible Birds and Other Stories, by Lauren Groff

becsal's review

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3.5

took me forever, wasn’t really that interested at first but once I sat down with it I enjoyed it. Groff does a really good job creating complicated characters and vivid stories. She ends the stories just in the right place, leaving you thinking and unsettled but in the best way. 

ariamacmeix's review against another edition

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challenging dark emotional reflective tense slow-paced

4.5

ctownill's review against another edition

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4.0

Groff writes stories that ache. Every story kept me fully rapt. Some stories do employ similar themes/character traits, but instead of feeling bored or expected, each new character felt deserving of it. What a beautiful collection.

kittyburritoland's review against another edition

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3.0

3.5 stars. Liked some, didn't like others.

pearseanderson's review against another edition

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5.0

Holy shit, Lauren Groff does it again. This is a collection of LONG short stories that tend to cover the lives and relationships middle-class women have with each other, and how men can change this rhythm and distort it. Groff pulls this off with swagger and charm. Her hyperspecific use of detail, present but low symbolism, and brilliant characterization make this one of the best books I have read this year. Every story does something great with such scale and originality! So many interesting characters, from the ambassador at the beginning to the terrifying imagined Sammy character in "Fugue." I cannot recommend this enough, and after this and the American Short Fiction issue, will be adding Groff's name to my list of inspirations/role models/person to immediately read when stuff comes out (like Florida). Wow woow wooow.

Connection: I will be working with/around Lauren Groff this summer at the Tin House Summer Workshop!

scarpuccia's review against another edition

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4.0

I love Lauren Groff's writing, her way with words. I'd say the writing in these stories is perhaps more exciting than the stories themselves. Not that the stories aren't riveting. Or some of them.

They are all fairly long and focus principally on the dilemmas of women. She shows herself to be versatile in terms of setting and period - one story takes place in France in 1940, another during Spanish flu epidemic in the second decade of the 20th century and another in an unnamed country at an unnamed date where there's a dictatorship (the one dud in the collection for me).

A criticism might be that her men aren't as richly imagined as her women.

A solid 4+ stars.

mizdoubleu's review against another edition

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5.0

I love how seemingly effortlessly Lauren Groff takes her readers back in time (or to another place in our own time) and makes us feel as if we personally know each of her characters. Her stories are sad, funny, elegiac, and full of warmth. Groff might be for me one of the few writers for whom I will read most if not all of their published work. And I plan to re-read many of these stories. As a student of great writing, I can't think of a contemporary I admire more.

mc900ft's review against another edition

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4.0

when i started this collection of short stories - well i wasn't moved, too much at all. by the third story, "majorette," i was hooked. discarded my family for the day and read the rest of the book. each short story is a mini novel. fully developed stories that suck you in and complete themselves - no shoddy wrap up endings - real stories with real developed characters and story lines. "blythe" was a devine read, stole the show.

book_darner's review against another edition

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challenging emotional reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix

3.0

missnicelady's review against another edition

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challenging dark emotional reflective medium-paced

3.5