Coverart for item
The Resource The empty family : stories, Colm Tóibín

The empty family : stories, Colm Tóibín

Label
The empty family : stories
Title
The empty family
Title remainder
stories
Statement of responsibility
Colm Tóibín
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
A collection of short fiction includes "The Street," in which Pakistani workers in Barcelona pursue a taboo affair; and "Two Women," in which a taciturn Irish set designer confronts repressed emotions while working in her homeland
Related
Storyline
Tone
Writing style
Award
  • Booklist Editors' Choice, 2011.
  • Lambda Literary Award for Gay Men's Fiction, 2011
  • Library Journal Best Books, 2011.
Review
  • /* Starred Review */ TÃ3ibà n returns to his native shores from Brooklyn for the bulk of these nine pristine stories, all--save one--contemporary tales of lives haunted by loss, whether it's the legacy of a sexually abusive priest in an already complicated love triangle in "The Pearl Fishers," the long-absent gay son who returns to Dublin from New York to attend to his mother's last moments in "One Minus One," or the aching void that greets an academic's return to a family home on the Irish coast in the wistful title story. Affairs, airports, and deathbeds populate a mature prose that's as tender with descriptions of sexual, often gay, love as it is with the heart's more inexpressible reaches, never more so than in the complex "The Street," where two Pakistanis find love in the repressive backdrop of blue-collar Barcelona only to be met with violence and a curious captivity. These stories go a long way toward establishing TÃ3ibà n as heir to William Trevor, with reverberations that show how life encompasses more than the living. (Jan.) --Staff (Reviewed October 11, 2010) (Publishers Weekly, vol 257, issue 40, p)
  • /* Starred Review */ This work conveys a remarkable cohesion for a collection of previously published stories. Each tale focuses on people who reckon transformative events from their pasts, or rather, are transformed by remembering. TÃ3ibà n's characteristically lyrical prose seems even more elegantly economical in this volume; this spareness enhances the beauty, sometimes aching, that emerges from observations and dialog. In "The Street," for example, TÃ3ibà n's tender rendering of the thoughts and routines of a wounded Pakistani man convalescing in a dim, dark garret in Barcelona transmits both the isolation and longing that run through each story like distant birdsong, palpable yet barely perceived. VERDICT In this triumphant follow-up to his award-winning novel Brooklyn , TÃ3ibà n exhibits his familiar stylistic simplicity while extending his emotional reach and range in surprising ways. There's a mastery of romantic eroticism that calls to mind Camus's lush lyricism in "Return to Tipasa" and Exile and the Kingdom , as well as the seductive strangeness of Katherine Ann Porter's best-known short stories. For all readers of fiction. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 8/10.]— J. Greg Matthews, Washington State Univ. Libs., Pullman --J. Greg Matthews (Reviewed November 15, 2010) (Library Journal, vol 135, issue 19, p65)
  • /* Starred Review */ The Irish-born, award-winning novelist reconfirms his mastery of the short story. TÃ3ibín broadened his readership and raised his profile with the exquisitely bittersweet Brooklyn (2009), and this collection is every bit as rich. Befitting an author who straddles cultures (he teaches at Princeton while retaining a home in Dublin), he peoples his stories with characters trying to navigate between different countries, often involving some reconciliation of a past and present. Many of the stories involve homosexual protagonists (engaged in sexual relations more explicit than anything in Brooklyn), with sexual identity practically another country, a boundary to straddle or cross. "The future is a foreign country; they do things differently there," he writes of the reunion in "The Pearl Fishers" of two men and a woman, friends from school, where the woman didn't know that the men had a physical relationship before she fell in love with one of them and married him. The story builds to the revelations that have brought them together again with the things that must remain unsaid. Though most of the stories involve family dynamics (as did his Mothers and Sons: Stories, 2007), the narratives underscore "how apart people were...how deeply and singly themselves." A strong sense of mortality also permeates the stories, as the first-person narrator of the title story meditates on how "I, like anyone else who was born, will be condemned eventually to lie in darkness as long as time lasts." The last story is the longest and one of the strongest, as the 68 pages of "The Street" find a Pakistani immigrant to Barcelona, brought there in a contemporary form of indentured servitude, learning so much about power, others and himself. It's a novel's worth of material compressed into a long story. Likely to rank with the best story collections of the year.(Kirkus Reviews, October 15, 2010)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
369284
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorDate
1955-
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Tóibín, Colm
Dewey number
823/.914
Index
no index present
Literary form
short stories
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Families
  • Home
  • Families
  • Home
http://bibfra.me/vocab/lite/titleRemainder
stories
Label
The empty family : stories, Colm Tóibín
Instantiates
Publication
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Contents
  • The street
  • Silence
  • The empty family
  • Two women
  • One minus one
  • The pearl fishers
  • Barcelona, 1975
  • The new Spain
  • The colour of shadows
Control code
795251
Dimensions
23 cm
Edition
First Scribner hardcover edition.
Extent
275 pages
Isbn
9781439138328
Lccn
2010032931
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9781439138328
  • (OCoLC)548607406
Label
The empty family : stories, Colm Tóibín
Publication
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Contents
  • The street
  • Silence
  • The empty family
  • Two women
  • One minus one
  • The pearl fishers
  • Barcelona, 1975
  • The new Spain
  • The colour of shadows
Control code
795251
Dimensions
23 cm
Edition
First Scribner hardcover edition.
Extent
275 pages
Isbn
9781439138328
Lccn
2010032931
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9781439138328
  • (OCoLC)548607406

Library Locations

    • Central LibraryBorrow it
      710 W. Cesar Chavez St, Austin, TX, 78701, US
      30.2713021 -97.7460168
    • Howson BranchBorrow it
      2500 Exposition Blvd., Austin, TX, 78703, US
      30.2982508 -97.7675915
    • Ruiz BranchBorrow it
      1600 Grove Blvd., Austin, TX, 78741, US
      30.2298616 -97.7070109
Processing Feedback ...