Free PDF Florida by Lauren Groff – cafe1919.org
A collection of eleven short stories set mostly in the titular state Florida examines the inner lives of young women nd mothers fflicted by malaise lcoholism nd occasionally despair Abusive men neglected children unbearable storms nd the southern wilderness recur throughout the collection the pieces gathered here feel like variations on the same set of themes Groff writes lush sentences full of palpable nd unsettling images nd her stories move t measured pace Sometimes the stories felt scattered in focus nd occasionally I wished they would have ended on definitive notes Favorite stories included Ghost nd Empties Above The Scent of Rosa's Oil and Belownd Yport If these stories re nything to go by Lauren Groff is Nobodys Angel (Willow Park, almost comprehensively disillusioned with men Men in these storiesre either bsent inept in nother world or downright threatening The last story nd by far the least successful goes the whole hog nd deploys Guy de Mauspassant to paint thoroughly irksome nd depressing portrait of masculinity As Defending Hearts a Brit one tends to forget how many deadly creatures therere in the US The most scary threat we face from the natural world here is perhaps bee sting Groff s Florida is teeming with ligators snakes wild cats bears And then there s the murderous weather All the stories in Florida re bout lonely nameless women stranded close to the heart of darkness There s constant sense the pollution nd corruption everywhere the wild weather that Armageddon isn t far way It s gloomy vision But the writing Feel the Heat (Phoenix Agency, as you d expect is fabulouslylive with vitality nd elouence Were I n editor I would have omitted the last Sudden Fury (The Last Gunfighter, and longest story For me it spoilt this otherwise riveting collection of thematically linked stories It wasn t very well writtennd it lacked the subtlety of the other stories Strange that the only story Spiky about novelist proved to be the weakest If there s one subject novelist ought to be ble to make compelling it s her own profession but oddly Groff s novelist was never convincing And the nti male propaganda was over the top It s the stories that re Dungeon of Death actually set in Florida thatre the best I wonder if there exists collection of short stories by nyone Chekhov where the uality is maintained throughout And I m not sure it s Love Rockets a good idea to place the worst story last By the time you come to review you have the disappointing final stories uppermost in your mind A better trick would be to insert the worst stories in the middlend end with cracker I probably would have given this five stars if the order had been changed After ll you expect A Deceptive Homecoming (Hattie Davish Mystery, a little tension to disappear in the middle of the novel but if it ends well you forget I was left feeling women need love than men do Now I m wondering if that s true Two major connected threads in this superb story collectionre mbivalence bout Florida nd mbivalence bout motherhood There s n oppressive tmosphere throughout with environmental catastrophe n underlying threat Set ups vary in scope from lmost the whole span of life to one scene A dearth of named characters emphasizes just how universal the scenarios The Hired Man and emotionsre Groff s style is like cross between Karen Russell s Swamplandia nd Cormac McCarthy s The Road nd her unexpected turns of phrase jump off the pageThe narrator of The Midnight Zone staying with her sons in hunting camp 20 miles from civilization ponders the cruelty of time Almost A Gentleman and her failure to be sufficiently maternal while the woman in Flower Hunters is so lost inn eighteenth century naturalist s book that she forgets to get Halloween costumes for her kids A few favorites of mine were Ghosts nd Empties in which the narrator goes for long walks t twilight nd watches time passing through the unwitting tableaux of the neighbors windows Eyewall matter of fact ghost story nd Above nd Below in which woman slips into homelessness it s terrifying how precarious her life is t every step Florida feels innovative nd terrifyingly relevant Any one of its stories is bracing read together they form Here by the Bloods a masterpieceI reviewed this for the May 30th Stylist Book Wars columnSome favorite lines What had. The stories in this collection span characters towns decades even centuries but Florida its landscape climate historynd state of mind becomes its gravitational center n energy mood s mu.
Been built to seem so solid was fragile in the face of time because time is impassive nimal than human Time would not care if you fell out of it It would continue on without you from The Midnight Zone The wind played the chimney until the whole place wheezed like bagpipe from Eyewall everybody is sleeping save for the tree frogs nd the sinners from Snake Stories How lonely it would be the mother thinks looking t her children to live in this dark world without them from Yport 3 starsI loved Lauren Groff s Fates nd Furies I thought the writing was bsolutely brilliant nd the story Bound (Torn Trilogy, and characters were really original So I was pretty excited to get my hands on Florida which is Groff s latest short story collection Unfortunately I can t ravebout the stories in the same way I raved bout Fates nd Furies I recognize her talented writing but there was flat clever feel to her stories that made it hard for me to feel engaged Most of the stories focused on women often with young children often in Florida often with distant husbands often dark nd ll struggling with internal personal turmoil Some stories were definitely better than others There was one set during wind storm in Florida with Loyalty and Lies a womanlone t home with her two boys that really got my ttention And she really captures the nuances of mothers love for young children There s Fortunes Flames a creepy storybout two young girls left lone on n island But overall these stories didn t have me particularly excited And I must lso warn that it s definitely not book for who re fraid of snakes Thanks to Edelweiss nd the publisher for n opportunity to read n dvance copy Here s the thing I really do love Groff s writing These short stories re no exception she is master craftsman She paints so well with her words Claiming Her and phrasing It s just thatI don t do so well with darknd ll eleven of these stories re pretty dark I don t think Lauren Groff likes Florida very muchHere s what I took way from this collection Florida is mold feral cats snakes bugs humidity rot spanish moss vines gators sinkholes homelessness tent cities termites mosuitos hurricanes lizards panthers damp nd dense tangle bleaching sun dread nd heatMotherhood is something to be deeply conflicted bout When in doubt drink heavilyEveryone is lonely loneliness is everwhere nd ghosts surround you When lonely drink heavilyMen re predatory scum rapists busive devious self involved OR tender Murder Go Round and kind fathershusbands ORny combination of the How Foreign Policy Decisions Are Made In The Third World: A Comparative Analysis above yetnother thing to be deeply conflicted Alcohol Fuels: Policies, Production, And Potential aboutGlobal warming climate change is something to obsessbout on daily basis These re Cambridge Modern History volumes 1-5 all really wellrticulated stories but they re lso disturbingly bleak I was relieved to be done with the bookA 4 for the writing Spices, Saints, and Saracens: The Egyptian Wanderings of a Dominican Friar, 1483 a 3 for how much I liked it If Goodreadsllowed it I would give this 35 but rounding down to 3 because I just didn t really like it I m spending two weeks in Florida in October That gives me just over 3 months to shake this off 354 When she was pregnant with Jude s sister she came into the bathroom to take Empire of the Waves: Voyage of the Moon Child a cool bath one August nightnd without her glasses missed the three foot The Object of Performance: The American Avant-Garde since 1970 albinolligator her husband had stored in the bathtub The next morning she was gone Florida Hot sticky treacherous or Of Mice and Men as one character says damp dense tangle An Eden of dangerous things I have spent time therend The truth might be moral but it isn t lways right Snakes gators swamps nd storms form the backdrop of these exuisitely human storiesI have to say I enjoyed Florida so much than Fates nd Furies Groff s writing style is dense nd wordy metaphorical nd poetic nd sometimes exhausting Reading her full length novel was chore but for me t least Groff seems born to write short stories Small hard hitting snippets of lives that still make you feel emotionally drained but I Was Anastasia also thoughtfulnd satisfiedThe natural wonders Choice of the Cat and dangers of Florida play intolmost Three Cups of Deceit all these stories A snake devotee meets his end in the wildernesst the hands of his life s passion A stressed mother of two boys is injured in Sparrow Road a literal cabin in the woods Twobandoned children fight A Banner With a Strange Device: A Novel of Boston against starvatio. Chs place of residence Groff transports the reader then jolts us lert with crackle of wit wave of sadness Winners Take All: The Elite Charade of Changing the World a flash of crueltys she writes The Point of It All: A Lifetime of Great Loves and Endeavors about loneliness rage familynd the passag.
NIt s Yoga: The Art of Adjusting a bookbout people often women nd mothers but not lways becoming unmoored The Neural Basis of Free Will and losing their way The opening story isbout woman who takes to walking t night to calm her recently cuired propensity for yelling During these strolls she observes her neighbors through their windows unveiling pockets of their lives in punchy descriptions It s mazing how much you can learn just by watching peopleFor the most part the stories seem to be narrating series of events in intricate detail observing nature nd moments between people But then once in Locked and Loaded (U.S. Marshals, a while Groff delivers perfect line that captures Past Destinies a widespread thought or fear tapping deep into the human psychend offering insight It s extremely powerfulCW Child Travels: Collected Writings, 1950-1993 abuseneglect rape non graphic generalnxietydepressionBlog Facebook Twitter Instagram Youtube The first line in Florida never left me I have somehow become If Wishes Were Horses a woman who yells The entire first story was one of my favorites from the collection PersonallyI ve played with manatees taken walks in the scorching heat spent beach days with our dogs witnessed thousands of dead smelly fishlong the coastline nd survived the panic of my daughter caught in the middle of nasty hurricane Florida flat s pancake with hurricanes lligators nd snakes sticky hot I miss the mountains nd redwoods whenever I visit Lauren Groff got me with these short storiesI didn t expect much I haven t been goo goo fan of herMy fear is she s too brilliant for me to understand too sarcastic too cynical nd simply sees the world through ll that is wrong However I kinda fell in love with Lauren nd her stories in FloridaI m not jumping her fan band wagon just yetbut I felt something in these stories that was missing for me in Furies Lauren is wizard with words Rainbow Brite: Starlite Saves the Day an inventor with her sentencesn A Social History of Modern Art, Volume 2: Art in an Age of Bonapartism, 1800-1815 artist creatornd part subtle comedian These stories re dark but not without humor I can t believe I m saying this but I could easily read this gain In fact I d love to want toLauren s stories spin on words creative gorgeous sentences moved me I experienced ll that s wrong with the world funneled through mothers in Floridathrough their nger vulnerability but lso from place of ownership responsibility I enjoyed this bookand surprised myself Any book called Florida needs to be infused by The Unspeakable Mind a thorough sense of placend Lauren Groff does just that I have been fan since LOVING Fates nd Furies Time and Philosophy: A History of Continental Thought a few years backnd have been meaning to pick up of her books Murder at Beechwood and this very strong collection of short stories has cemented her place in my heartWhile not every story is set in Florida Groff s protagonistsll have connection to that place connection they sometimes strain gainst nd sometimes welcome Her protagonists re women depressed nd difficult Ask an Astronaut: My Guide to Life in Space and wonderfully flawed women often mothers with difficult Revelations from Revelation (Mass Market) and believable relationship to motherhood I loved the way these womenre Jane and the Stillroom Maid (Jane Austen Mysteries, allowed to be difficult while Groff shinesn unflinching spotlight on them Crude World: The Violent Twilight of Oil and their flawsnd the way they re suffocating in their own skin I dore that theycan be unpleasant while ultimately staying sympathetic I do wish this unpleasantness did not lways lso show itself in Alien: Sea of Sorrows a disdain for their ownnd other bodies Once I noticed that I could not unsee it I would have liked there to be variety in their deepest flaws because Journey Of Fate as it is the fixation on often overweight bodies feels unkindnd unnecessaryLauren Groff is in perfect command of her language her sentences Judas of Nazareth: How the Greatest Teacher of First-Century Israel Was Replaced by a Literary Creation are sharp in the way that I like them to be in realistic short fiction comparisons to Roxane Gay came to mind herend that is obviously one of the highest compliments I can give Make it Happen: Surrender Your Fear. Take the Leap. Live On Purpose. a short story writer The storiesre meticulously structured nd surprising while her perfect tone is recognizable in ll of themNow excuse me while I buy everything else she has ever writtenI received n rc of this book courtesy of NetGalley nd Random House UK Cornerstone in exchange for n honest review fulfilling my 2020 goal to read Satellite at least one book each month that was given to mes Blank Darkness a present that i haven t yet gottenround to reading because i m n ungrateful dickreview to come. E of time With shocking Makers accuracynd effect she pinpoints the moments The Heart Has Its Reasons and decisionsnd connections behind human pleasure Americana: A 400-Year History of American Capitalism and pain hopend despair love nd fury the moments that make us liv.
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Lauren Groff was born in Cooperstown NY and grew up one block from the Baseball Hall of Fame She graduated from Amherst College and has an MFA in fiction from the University of Wisconsin Madison Her short stories have appeared or are forthcoming in a number of journals including The Atlantic Monthly Ploughshares Glimmer Train Hobart and Five Points as well as in the anthologies Best Amer