Alice Munro: Writing Her Lives

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Alice Munro: Writing Her Lives

by Robert Thacker

McClelland & Stewart | May 3, 2011 | Trade Paperback |

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This is the book about one of the world's great authors, Alice Munro, which shows how her life and her stories intertwine.

For almost thirty years Robert Thacker has been researching this book, steeping himself in Alice Munro's life and work, working with her co-operation to make it complete. The result is a feast of information for Alice Munro's admirers everywhere.

By following "the parallel tracks" of Alice Munro's life and Alice Munro's texts, he gives a thorough and revealing account of both her life and work. "There is always a starting point in reality," she once said of her stories, and this book reveals just how often her stories spring from her life.

The book is chronological, starting with her pioneer ancestors, but with special attention paid to her parents and to her early days growing up poor in Wingham. Then all of her life stages - the marriage to Jim Munro, the move to Vancouver, then to Victoria to start the bookstore, the three daughters, the divorce, the return to Huron County, and the new life with Gerry Fremlin - leading to the triumphs as, story by story, book by book, she gains fame around the world, until rumours of a Nobel Prize circulate . . .


From the Hardcover edition.

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 664 Pages, 5.91 × 8.66 × 1.18 in

Published: May 3, 2011

Publisher: McClelland & Stewart

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0771085109

ISBN - 13: 9780771085109

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– More About This Product –

Alice Munro: Writing Her Lives

Alice Munro: Writing Her Lives

by Robert Thacker

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 664 Pages, 5.91 × 8.66 × 1.18 in

Published: May 3, 2011

Publisher: McClelland & Stewart

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0771085109

ISBN - 13: 9780771085109

Read from the Book

Recalling her university years, Munro says that she loved her time there, “being in that atmosphere, having all those books, not having to do any housework. Those are the only two years of my life without housework.” Not that she has greatly minded such work, either before university or after, but those two years at Western stand singular in her memory: “to have that concentration of your life, that something else was the thing you got up in the morning to do, and it was all reading and writing, studying.” Munro enrolled initially in the journalism program as something of a cover, so that she would not have to say that she wrote fiction — though, given the contributor note in the April 1950 Folio that has her major as Honours English “with an emphasis on creative writing,” it was not much of a cover. The journalism program required English, and that first year Munro also took English history (which she says she already knew backwards), economics, French conversation, and psychology. Those enrolled in programs like journalism — that is, with some sort of applied focus — were put in the same sections of these courses and were seated alphabetically. Thus Alice Laidlaw met Diane Lane — a first-­year pre-business student from Amherstburg — who became a friend and roommate. Both students had come from small towns, neither had much money (though Laidlaw was the more strapped), and each, initially, roomed with som
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From the Publisher

This is the book about one of the world's great authors, Alice Munro, which shows how her life and her stories intertwine.

For almost thirty years Robert Thacker has been researching this book, steeping himself in Alice Munro's life and work, working with her co-operation to make it complete. The result is a feast of information for Alice Munro's admirers everywhere.

By following "the parallel tracks" of Alice Munro's life and Alice Munro's texts, he gives a thorough and revealing account of both her life and work. "There is always a starting point in reality," she once said of her stories, and this book reveals just how often her stories spring from her life.

The book is chronological, starting with her pioneer ancestors, but with special attention paid to her parents and to her early days growing up poor in Wingham. Then all of her life stages - the marriage to Jim Munro, the move to Vancouver, then to Victoria to start the bookstore, the three daughters, the divorce, the return to Huron County, and the new life with Gerry Fremlin - leading to the triumphs as, story by story, book by book, she gains fame around the world, until rumours of a Nobel Prize circulate . . .


From the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

Robert Thacker wrote his M.A. thesis at Waterloo on Alice Munro way back in 1976. Now the professor of Canadian Studies and English at St. Lawrence University, he was for many years the editor of The American Review of Canadian Studies, and is recognized as the academic authority on Alice Munro.


From the Hardcover edition.

Editorial Reviews

How the world sees Alice Munro (and Runaway):
"Alice Munro has a strong claim to being the best fiction writer now working in North America."
-Jonathan Franzen, The New York Times Book Review

"Cynthia Ozick has said of Munro, that she is our Chekhov. But . . . she is our Flaubert, too. We couldn't ask for more."
-Claire Messud, Globe and Mail

"Alice Munro has devoted her career to the short story, and when reading her work it is difficult to remember why the novel was ever invented."
-The Times (U.K.)


From the Hardcover edition.
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