A Place I've Never Been: Stories

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9780670821969: A Place I've Never Been: Stories

A collection of ten stories which explore the joys and agonies of love and friendship. Each of the stories illuminates a dark corner of human existance. Some are amusing and some are tragic. The author also wrote "Family Dancing", "The Lost Language of Cranes" and "Equal Affections".

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From Publishers Weekly:

With this new collection of short fiction, Leavitt writes with increased authority and range about love and loss within families and among gay and straight couples, territory claimed before in Family Dancing and Equal Affections . Set in Italy, both the rhythmic, rounded "I See London, I See France" and the ably orchestrated "Roads to Rome" feature a visiting American observing the uninhibited interaction of sophisticated and somewhat decadent Italian families through the filter of the protagonist's conventional, constrained values. Another outsider, but on the move, is Celia, narrator of the title story, unattached to any person or thing except Nathan, who is gay and has been her best friend since college. When he leaves for Europe, she gets a makeover at Bloomingdale's, begins to date a man at work and finds herself, on Nathan's return, unwilling to give him the same self-abnegating support she'd accorded him before. Fidelity and betrayal are explored in "My Marriage to Vengeance" and the perfectly shaped "Houses"; grief and recovery animate the antic, affectionate "Spouse Night." In its final paragraphs, "Chips Is Here" turns its funny, antagonistic pet-owners scenario upside down with a piercing evocation of constancy. 35,000 first printing; author tour.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal:

Leavitt's reputation as a deeply gifted writer with a special interest in the gay experience has been established with works like the novel Equal Affections ( LJ 1/89) and the stories in Family Dancing ( LJ 8/84). A few of these new tales move beyond gay themes--"Spouse Night," for instance, in which a bereaved man and woman have an affair after meeting at a support group for terminal patients and their families--but even those in which gay relationships predominate are crafted with such skill, compassion, and sensitivity that one need not have a special interest in that topic to be deeply drawn into their fictional worlds. Objective correlatives and metaphors abound: empty houses, or the death of a cat, trigger sudden epiphanies enabling characters to identify with antagonists and discern whole new patterns in their mysteriously intertwined lives. Sometimes, as in the title story, one spoken sentence can turn a concept inside out in shattering revelation. Witty and elegant without the least conscious artifice, these tales are both entertaining and profoundly moving. Highly recommended. Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 6/1/90.
- Elise Chase, Forbes Lib., Northampton, Mass.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Leavitt, David
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