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The Guy Not Taken: Stories
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About the Author

Jennifer Weiner is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of sixteen books, including Good in Bed, In Her Shoes, and her memoir, Hungry Heart: Adventures in Life, Love, and Writing. A graduate of Princeton University and contributor to the New York Times Opinion section, Jennifer lives with her family in Philadelphia. Visit her online at JenniferWeiner.com.

Reviews

In her recent novels, notably In Her Shoes, Weiner explores human relationships in all their complexity, poignancy, and delight. Although Weiner's voice and settings are very contemporary, the messes people make among family members, friends, and lovers are as old as time. This audio production consists of nearly a dozen stories-some interrelated and some standalone-that are small portraits of fear, commitment, and love. In the first story, a long-married man with three teenaged children pushes himself away from the table and walks out of the house, never to return. His wife copes by swimming miles each day in the crumbling family pool, and the children try to handle their beloved dad's disappearance in their own sad and often self-destructive ways. The tale that will have listeners talking aloud to their audio players concerns a woman whose aunt leaves her a fabulous New York apartment. In order to endear herself to her loser real-estate-broker boyfriend, she agrees to sell the apartment so he can boost his confidence by getting the prestige (and the big commission). Performers Mary Catherine Garrison and Jordan Bridges are adequate; there's not a great deal of expression, and careful listening is required to keep the characters straight. Still, this is recommended for public libraries.-Barbara Valle, El Paso P. L., TX Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.

"Fans will savor Weiner's confidential tone and salty wit."
-- People
"Shouldn't be missed.... It is the reader who will be taken by this set of eleven marvelous short stories."
-- Entertainment Weekly
"Puts Weiner on the map as one of her generation's best literary voices."
-- The Boston Herald
"Another delightful example of Jennifer Weiner's tender way with words and emotions."
-- Harper's Bazaar

This collection of 11 stories written over the past 15 years reads like a series of studies for Weiner's larger chick lit portraits. As in the novels (Goodnight Nobody; Good in Bed), smart, acerbic, 30-something women battle dating damage and broken childhoods (absent fathers in particular) in order to build their own families-or to convince themselves they still want to. In "The Wedding Bed," a new bride realizes, "I thought that every story I would tell for the rest of my life will somehow be about this: about the man who left and never came back." "Mother's Hour" tightly focuses on new toddler trauma as experienced by first-time mothers and shows how motherhood can be another conduit for woman-to-woman envy and suspicion. In "Swim," sometime scriptwriter and obsessive swimmer Ruth, her face scarred from the car accident in which her parents died, must eschew the verbal "edge" she finds so compelling in men in order to find love. One roots for Weiner's characters as they come to terms-and in some cases, heal-from disappointment and neglect. (Sept.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

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