Toibin Colm Mothers and Sons

ISBN 13: 9780330441834

Mothers and Sons

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9780330441834: Mothers and Sons
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Each of the nine stories in this beautifully written, intensely intimate collection centers on a transformative moment that alters the delicate balance of power between mother and son, or changes the way they perceive one another. With exquisite grace and eloquence, Tóibín writes of men and women bound by convention, by unspoken emotions, by the stronghold of the past. Many are trapped in lives they would not choose again, if they ever chose at all. Tóibín brings to this stunning first collection an acute understanding of human frailty and longing. These are haunting, profoundly moving stories by a writer who is himself a master.

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Review:

The nine stories in Mothers and Sons examine in depth some of the ways that the bond that is forged--or not--between mothers and their sons is altered, re-formed, or broken forever. In The Master, his fictionalized life of Henry James, Toíbín made the reader see and understand the writer more fully than ever before. Similarly, these new stories look at relationships between fully formed adults and, with a few deft strokes, make clear what their mutual history has brought them to. In most cases, they must deal with loss, while trying to grasp the complexities of that sometimes precarious balance between a mother and her son.

In the first story, "The Use of Reason," a lifelong burglar is nearly brought down by his mother, who talks too much when she drinks in her local pub. In "A Song," Noel, on the town with a group of his musician friends, ends up in the same bar as his estranged mother, who is asked to sing. She sings an Irish ballad about love and treachery and he is convinced that she is singing directly to him. In "A Priest in the Family," Molly's son Frank is accused of abuse, but no one has the courage to tell her until it is almost time for the trial. Her reaction is not entirely predictable. "Three Friends" takes place after a young man attends his mother's funeral. He joins his friends for a night of carousing and drugs ending with a late-night swim, where he is emboldened to make an overt sexual pass at one of his buddies, with interesting results. The final story, "A Long Winter," is set in Spain in a remote village. Miquel's mother drinks. Everyone knows it but Miquel. His father pours out her supply of booze and she leaves the house. So far it's a simple story. It doesn't stay that way. Each of these stories has its own gravitas, its own sadness, and that laser-beam of insight that is Toíbín's trademark. --Valerie Ryan

About the Author:

COLM TÃ Â IBÃ Â N was born in Ireland in 1955. He is the author of five novels, including the Booker-shortlisted The Blackwater Lightship and The Master, winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. He has been a Stein Visiting Writer at Stanford University and a visiting writer at the Michener Center at the University of Texas at Austin. He lives in Dublin.

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9781416534662: Mothers and Sons: Stories

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ISBN 10:  1416534660 ISBN 13:  9781416534662
Publisher: Scribner, 2008
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9781416534655: Mothers and Sons: Stories

Scribner, 2007
Hardcover

9780330441827: MOTHERS AND SONS.

Picador, 2006
Hardcover

9780330521031: Mothers and Sons

Picador
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9780330423052: Mothers and Sons: Stories

Scribner, 2008
Softcover

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Book Description Pan MacMillan, United Kingdom, 2009. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Colm Toibin s Mothers and Sons is a sensitive and beautifully written meditation on the dramas surrounding this most elemental of relationships. Psychologically intricate and emotionally incisive, each finely wrought story teases out the delicate and difficult strands woven between mothers and sons. This is an acute, masterful and moving collection that confirms Toibin as a great prose stylist of our time. Seller Inventory # AA79780330441834

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Book Description Pan MacMillan, United Kingdom, 2009. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Colm Toibin s Mothers and Sons is a sensitive and beautifully written meditation on the dramas surrounding this most elemental of relationships. Psychologically intricate and emotionally incisive, each finely wrought story teases out the delicate and difficult strands woven between mothers and sons. This is an acute, masterful and moving collection that confirms Toibin as a great prose stylist of our time. Seller Inventory # AA79780330441834

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