The State We're In: Maine Stories

  • Title: The State We're In: Maine Stories
  • Author: Ann Beattie
  • ISBN: 9781501107818
  • Page: 427
  • Format: Hardcover
  • The State We re In Maine Stories From a multiple prize winning master of the short form a stunning collection of brand new linked stories that perfectly capture the zeitgeist through the voices of vivid and engaging women from adole
    From a multiple prize winning master of the short form a stunning collection of brand new, linked stories that perfectly capture the zeitgeist through the voices of vivid and engaging women from adolescence to old age We build worlds for ourselves wherever we go, writes Ann Beattie The State We re In, her magnificent new collection of linked stories, is about how we liFrom a multiple prize winning master of the short form a stunning collection of brand new, linked stories that perfectly capture the zeitgeist through the voices of vivid and engaging women from adolescence to old age We build worlds for ourselves wherever we go, writes Ann Beattie The State We re In, her magnificent new collection of linked stories, is about how we live in the places we have chosen or been chosen by It s about the stories we tell our families, our friends, and ourselves, the truths we may or may not see, how our affinities unite or repel us, and where we look for love.Many of these stories are set in Maine, but The State We re In is about than geographical location, and certainly is not a picture postcard of the coastal state Some characters have arrived by accident, others are trying to get out The collection opens, closes, and is interlaced with stories that focus on Jocelyn, a wryly disaffected teenager living with her aunt and uncle while attending summer school As in life, the narratives of other characters interrupt Jocelyn s, sometimes challenging, sometimes embellishing her view.Riveting, witty, sly, idiosyncratic, and bold, these stories describe a state of mind, a manner of being now A Beattie story, says Margaret Atwood, is like a fresh bulletin from the front we snatch it up, eager to know what s happening out there on the edge of that shifting and dubious no man s land known as interpersonal relations The State We re In is a fearless exploration of contemporary life by a brilliant writer whose fiction startles as it illuminates.

    • ☆ The State We're In: Maine Stories || ☆ PDF Read by Ì Ann Beattie
      427 Ann Beattie
    • thumbnail Title: ☆ The State We're In: Maine Stories || ☆ PDF Read by Ì Ann Beattie
      Posted by:Ann Beattie
      Published :2019-07-11T20:55:19+00:00

    About Ann Beattie


    1. Ann Beattie born September 8, 1947 is an American short story writer and novelist She has received an award for excellence from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters and a PEN Bernard Malamud Award for excellence in the short story form Her work has been compared to that of Alice Adams, J.D Salinger, John Cheever, and John Updike She holds an undergraduate degree from American University and a masters degree from the University of Connecticut.


    283 Comments


    1. Ann Beattie is a master of the short story, and her talent shines in her first collection in 10 years. The stories all take place in Maine, a beautiful backdrop. There are stories about a 17 year old girl sent to live with her aunt and uncle for a summer while her mother has a hysterectomy, a 77 year old woman and her dog, a wealthy couple who ask a couple less well off if they can pitch a wedding reception tent in their back yard instead of their own, and a beautiful story about an elderly coup [...]

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    2. I should have listened to the mediocre review in the Times! Especially when there are so rarely mediocre reviews in the Times, I should learn that "mediocre" is code for "not very good at all." But I'm a sucker for anything about Maine and I figured these would at least be fun short stories. They weren't. I am struggling to articulate exactly WHY I objected to them, but it strikes me that they seemed very writerly. Beattie is lauded for being a master of the form, but these short stories alterna [...]

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    3. Linked short stories taking place in Maine that are depressing, sometimes dark, and usually funny as we watch the characters make good and poor decisions about their lives with each story clearly written in a way not to have closure. One of my favorite characters is a bratty teen named Jocelyn who we meet in the first story. But we have to cut Jocelyn some slack once we learn that: 1) her mother is in a hospital, 2) the guy she likes in a hospital, 3) she is spending the summer with an uncle she [...]

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    4. I've avoided reading Ann Beattie for the same reason I've avoided the rest of the dirty realism crowd. I emerged from my literary awakening as an undergraduate student to survey the contemporary scene and found much of what was being taught, especially in fiction writing workshops, boring and artless compared to the modernism and postmodernism of Joyce, Woolf, Pynchon, etc. Obviously, I've softened my stance somewhat (though I still consider Carver a sham who set back American letters by at leas [...]

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    5. This is the latest collection from Beattie, the mistress of the short story form, after a gap of about ten years. The 15 short stories are loosely interconnected, and bookended by two pieces on 17-year-old Jocelyn, as she spends her summer with her uncle and aunt, while her mom, Myrtis, convalesces from her illness. The importance of place, not so much geographically, but where we are emotionally and who we are in relation to, is alluded to in the title, "The State We're In". Unlike her previous [...]

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    6. A highly enjoyable collection of female-centered short stories, loosely tied together. Great writing style, vivid characters, delightful anecdotes. Felt like a drone dipping in on different Maine households, spying on their lives from above. Fun to be among the first to read this, courtesy of the advance copy I won on a giveaway.Background:I had put this book on my to-read list when the San Francisco Chronicle book review of this short story collection was extremely favorable a few months ago s [...]

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    7. meh. loved her old stuff, but that last two collections didn't really catch my attention. Just TELL ME A STORY; don't impress me with your command of language and your playing with style. in fact, her novels are much better now than her newest story collections. if you want a good collection of stories by Beattie, read collection of her New Yorker stories instead. it showcases her earlier stuff and is a fantastic read.

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    8. Received this book through First Reads, thank you! What drew me to enter the giveaway was spending time this summer in Maine on vacation. Maine is certainly not the focus here, nor did I think it would be, more so a common backdrop linking these women together, perhaps that people from or to Maine or New England or anywhere for that matter may think and behave in geographic-specific ways, or at least have similar influences on them? Maine surprised me and many of these women surprised me too. I [...]

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    9. I started reading her at the beginning of her career. She was slightly older. She was considered a master of the short story, even at a young age. I could never warm to her work. Then I just stopped reading her altogether. I probably checked this out because it said "Maine Stories," and I thought, "Let's see what she does with that." I had to force myself to finish the book. Her sentences are grammatically correct and impeccable. She also excels at details in the details: a disaffected teen pull [...]

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    10. Really terrific short story collection. I often find myself disappointed in short story collections for their unevenness or repetition. This collection was assembled beautifully. The stories spoke to each other and made connections in ways that didn't seem arbitrary or over coincidental. As a collection goes--this is one of the finest I've seen. I probably should have read it more slowly and allowed more time to digest and make connections. The collection would be a great one to teach and probab [...]

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    11. Author Ann Beattie is the poster child for tight ass readers who, along with her, worry every written word, a misplaced adjective is the beginning and middle of The End Days and the stories read claustrophobic, micromanaged and will drain every molecule of positive energy you posses.I had a mental break because of these stories and am writing from the Lunatic Asylum. I'm sending Ann Beattie the bill. Thank you so much Miss Lady for putting me here.Chris Roberts

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    12. themaineedge/buzz/the-As a reader, I’ve always been fond of short fiction. Collections are especially enjoyable – all those beginnings, middles and ends waiting to be consumed at whatever pace I so choose. It’s the reading equivalent of a television series added all at once to a streaming service; you can watch one at a time or go until you can’t anymore.Ann Beattie’s “The State We’re In: Maine Stories” is an example of the latter. Beattie is a noted purveyor of the form, one of [...]

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    13. I was only a little hesitant to read this because of mixed reviews, I had read Major Maybe short story within this collection that was published in the New Yorker and I wanted more of the same or similar stories. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this latest collection of short stories by Ann Beattie. This collection of slice of life vignettes has some cohesion, There are 3 short stories which are continuation of the same characters story over time. I was entertained by most of the stories, I forgot [...]

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    14. This was my first experience with Beattie. I found her stories to be intriguing and told with close attention to both the truly mundane, lifelike details that signify a realistic portrayal of something, and also some incredibly peculiar components that mark good fiction and cause you to lean in. We come to stories to learn about ourselves and the world, and often what we find in them is this mix of the familiar and the not-so-familiar. You can tell Beattie is a storyteller accustomed to mixing t [...]

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    15. I go back to 1976 with Ann Beattie's books - the year Chilly Scenes of Winter and Distortions were published. I enjoyed her quirky characters, even if I couldn't say that I knew anyone like them.This went on for about twenty years and, over time, I found myself more and more distanced from her characters, though there were times when the connection was still there.I find myself even more distanced from the stories in The State We're In. Many of them have open ended conclusions, almost as if she' [...]

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    16. Most of Ann Beattie's short stories in The State We're In are set in Maine. Her Maine is inhabited primarily by new residents or visitors who live close to the coast, south of Portland, and very close to the New Hampshire border. As a Maine writer myself, I read this book primarily to see how Beattie pictured my state. Yes, I loved some of her characters (her stories center on characters, not plot). But -- Maine? Not so much. Without her occasionally dropping in the name of a town or store or co [...]

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    17. I wasn't thrilled by this. Either Beattie's earlier writing was better or I've grown tired of her style. Every once in a while there was a great turn of phrase or piece of dialogue, but in general I found these stories thin and unsatisfying. And saying they are "linked" is misleading--I spent way too much time trying to figure out how characters from one story were or were not showing up in another, which was hard because I didn't find many of them memorable.

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    18. Beattie maintains her magic touch in the short story genre. There’s not one loser is this masterly collection. Her ear for dialogue is exact, her characters real.

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    19. Collection of linked stories - MaineExcellent - voice, sentences, characters "about how we live int he places we live- or have been chosen by"was in Maine while I was reading this

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    20. Boring. I struggled to finish it and quickly read through it. There was not much Maine in any of the stories. A lot of messy sentences and she kept trying to make weird interesting characters with a lack of success. Disappointed. The stories seemed pointless and annoying.

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    21. I would have to say that I was slightly disappointed with the set of stories in this collection. Billed as a " Maine Stories " collection, one would have to give a great deal of forbearance to go along with that. Many of the stories take place outside of Maine with only the most fragile of connections to the state. Outside of that little bit of falseness, however, the problem is that the stories are fairly nondescript. A character from one story might pop us as a peripheral character in another, [...]

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    22. I'd not read Ann Beattie before, but she is apparently considered a "master of the short form" (or so we are told on both the back cover and front flap of this volume) and earlier in the year this collection appeared on a couple of those "most anticipated" books lists. Having read it I can only assume her reputation alone got these stories published, as they almost all range from the mediocre to the utterly pointless. One story ("Yancey", about a poet receiving a visit from an IRS inspector) is [...]

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    23. Anne Beattie never disappoints. Her years of experience writing novels and short stories is evident in the way she crafts every sentence. You just sit back and let her fly the plane. Beattie is a resident of Maine, and it shows in the confident, quirky way she uses her home state as a backdrop to this collection of stories, some of them linked. I listened to the book on Audible, wearing headphones as I took my morning walk -- what a pleasant way to kill two birds with one stone!The only drawback [...]

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    24. The subtitle here is superfluous. These stories could have taken place anywhere--there is nothing about the descriptions of place or the characters themselves that make these Maine stories. There is the occasional insertion of the name of a local York establishment, such as The Stage Neck Inn or the Dockside, but then nothing to distinguish that place from a restaurant or hotel in Ames, Iowa or Cleveland. She does manage to avoid the faux pas of others who have tried to write about Maine without [...]

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    25. I was very disappointed by this collection, especially when I loved Beattie's New Yorker stories. Too many of these stories didn't feel finished; they ended abruptly before there was any kind of an arc, making them feel more like snapshots. It's not that I need resolution in all of my stories. These stories ended when they needed a little more to make them satisfying. There was little to no emotional resonance. Nothing to make them memorable. Of course, the writing itself is excellent with well [...]

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    26. i read a review after reading this book where the reviewer talked shit about ray carver, and then later felt justified and confident in ignoring their review, not because they talked shit about ray carver but because they had listened to this book as an audiobook - i dont mean this in a way to talk shit about audiobooks, or people who listen to audiobooks, or people who listen to audiobooks and then write reviews about audiobooks in which they talk shit about other books, other writers, etc. but [...]

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    27. I've read lots of Ann Beattie in the past, but nothing for a long time. I was excited to read something new from her but for me this fell flat. I just didn't engage with the characters or stories. It's not that I don't like short fiction - Etgar Keret is one of my favorite writers. It was as if as a reader you were dropped into a situation, glanced at it for a while and it was over. The only story that remotely touched me was Aunt Sophie Renaldo Brown which was more of a character study of both [...]

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    28. It's hard not to compare this to Olive Kitteridge. They're both collections of intertwined short stories, set in Maine; they share a similar understated style and a focus on the experience of women at different life stages. I liked Olive Kitteridge quite a lot, and that may be why I was not as enthusiastic about this collection of stories. Although they are original, and some moments or turns of phrase stick with me after I've finished reading, I think they still feel derivative because Elizabet [...]

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    29. I have to read Ann Beattie's stories slowly. She is an economical writer, who requires and, in my opinion, rewards a close reading. I have found stories in most collections of short fiction are of uneven quality. I thoroughly enjoyed Missed Calls and Aunt Sophie Renaldo Brown; the Little Hutchinsons, not so much. But overall, each story in the book caused me to pause, reflect, think and imagine. What more could I ask from an author?

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    30. There is no doubt in my mind that Ann Beattie is the greatest short story writer of our time and that she could give Hemingway, O. Henry, and Chekhov a run for their money as well. That being said, her latest, a slim volume of interconnected short stories set in Maine, is a disappointment. Yes, some of them are good, but many of them fall flat and feel forced. These are definitely not up to her usual standard of every one being a jewel. Maybe next time.

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