This book is a compilation of fifteen short stories about love. Love comes in every shape and size. The preconceived notions and romance of love are explored along with dating sites disasters. Three stories resonate with me. The first, The Opposite of Love, is about a college professor who lands her dream job the same day she finds out she has breast cancer. Being new to the faculty and without a friend base, she tells no one about her condition. She’s outed when she meets a fellow employee after a chemo session. After that, her students and the college staff treat her with sympathy and support. She learns love means sacrifice, her health and her job balance her joy and fear. The Man who made Whirligigs is next. An older man decides he would like a child and has made the decision to adopt a five year old girl. He meets a woman and they date for a while. Once the child enters his life, he devotes himself to her. No one else matters. A parent’s love is a selfish love. Dog People explores the notion that pets can open the door to love. Two people meet and their dogs bond. She believes this is a sign of true love, but she’s wrong. All the stories ring true with their emotion and disappointment.
None of these stories are sugar coated. Love is not always acknowledged or returned. The only advice my brother gave me about guys still rings true. “Just because they talk to you doesn’t mean they want to date you.” But it’s always worth the pursuit.
Recommended as a quick read for those who like a dose a realism with their romance.
About the Author:
I am an Assistant Professor of English at SUNY Plattsburgh, where I serve as the fiction editor for the Saranac Review. My memoir, The Family on Beartown Road (Random House, 2003), was a New York Times Notable Book, and my articles, stories, and poetry have appeared in SELF, MORE, Newsweek, People, New York Times Magazine, Salon, Tablet, and the Yale Review, among other publications.
I live in Plattsburgh, New York, with my daughter, Ava, our dog, Samo, and way, way too many cats.
My favorite color is purple, my favorite food is spice cake and I have a thing for cowboy boots and old trucks. In fact, I have an old truck.
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