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She Loves Me Not: New and Selected Stories

3.35  ·  Rating Details ·  95 Ratings  ·  21 Reviews
From an author praised by literary giants such as John Irving and the New York Times alike, a stunning story collection—over two decades in the making.

From an author Praised by literary giants and critics alike, a stunning compendium of selected stories over three decades in the making.

Ron Hansen has long been celebrated as a master of both the novel and the short form.
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published November 13th 2012 by Scribner (first published September 4th 2012)
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Nov 24, 2012 Susan rated it it was ok
Hard to rate this one. He's obviously a good writer and his mastery of language is impressive. The stories are interesting and engaging, but they are quite quirky, too much so for my personal taste. He seems to be doing sort of a collage technique in some that is intriguing but, for me, not as satisfying as a solid traditional narrative structure.
Jan 09, 2013 Carl rated it it was ok
Shelves: didn-t-finish
Am I the only one that thinks a story should have a narrative arc, some sort of plot? The stories in this book don't seem to have much in the way of plots and that makes them tedious.
Aug 26, 2014 Mike rated it liked it
Some great stories, but some misses, too. An erratic read, but "Wickedness" about a sudden blizzard, made the whole book worth it.
Jan 29, 2013 Stewart rated it really liked it
During the late 1990s, I wanted to buy Ron Hansen’s 1989 short story collection "Nebraska." Hansen and I grew up in the Midwest, albeit several hundred miles apart, but I was curious as to what he had to say about his native state of Nebraska. This was before the Internet and, and I couldn’t find the book at new or used bookstores after several months of searching. I recently came across his 2012 collection, "She Loves Me Not: New and Selected Stories," and was pleased to discover th ...more
Bob Mustin
May 05, 2016 Bob Mustin rated it liked it
I’m old school, I admit it. I do tinker with structure when I’m writing, but not enough to take away from the major tenets of the short story or novel: character development, moving story forward in the Aristotlean manner of rising action, climax, denouement. These, while leaving participatory room for the reader.
I know other forms of tinkering occur in writing classes of various sorts, and one may forgive many things, but not robbing the reader of being properly entertained and/or informed.

I like Ron Hansen's writing as a general rule. He has never been a genre-bound writer, as this collection vividly illustrates. The story topics range from historical fiction to contemporary crime. Most are set in Nebraska, such as 'Wickedness' which recalls the horrors the Children's Blizzard of 1888 that swept unexpectedly through the Plains states. "She Loves Me Not" is the 'personal' confession of a small time loser so infatuated with an exotic dancer that he agrees to help murder her thuggis ...more
Aug 06, 2013 Lianne added it
Ron Hansen is an author whose work I follow because he is local in my Bay Area of California. This is a short story collection with several of the short stories rooted in Nebraska and the Midwest. Ron Hansen's prose is vivid, spare, and engaging. My favorite in the collection is the first one: "Wilde in Omaha" wherein Hansen imagines Oscar Wilde on tour from the point of view of a culturally aspiring young man who yearns to get close to the international celebrity. The tone of this story is iron ...more
May 09, 2016 Eric rated it really liked it
As a man who has wept over the death of a dog, it is no small challenge to proclaim that Ron Hansen has penned perhaps the most hilarious story ever written about such an occurrence. It may be the only one to take that approach. And yet.

And yet "My Kid's Dog" is probably not the first or most important thing anyone needs to know about this very fine collection. I first encountered many of these stories years ago when "Nebraska" first came to my attention thanks to Daedalus, my favorite remainder
Diane S ☔
Nov 23, 2012 Diane S ☔ rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories
3.5 Have not read many stories set in Nebraska but there are several in this book, including one of my favorites about the Great Blizzard of 1888, which has interested me so much that I have checked out a non fiction book from my library called "The Children's Blizzard." Hansen does a great job with these stories, it is easy for the reader to immerse himself totally in the Midwest, his descriptions are so vivid, his writing smooth and relateable. Two other favorites of mine were "Wilde in Omaha" ...more
Mar 30, 2013 David rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
The story "My Communist" is thoroughly charming, and for that alone I'm glad I read the book. In one story Hansen skillfully describes an 1880s Nebraska blizzard from its contemporaries' point of view, in another the shop talk of auto mechanics of the 1980s. Many of the stories are disturbing or just plain strange, though, and I often wondered what exactly they were supposed to do. I may look for one of his novels next.
Jennie G
Mar 15, 2013 Jennie G rated it did not like it
Terrible. It's as if he wanted to see how many adjectives he could fit into each sentence. Totally unnecessary. Half the stories are constructed of small, random paragraphs with nothing to tie them together. Other stories are so jumbled they are nearly impossible to follow. Waste of time. One of the worst collections I have ever read.
Feb 02, 2014 Andrea rated it it was ok
I considered abandoning this part way through. The stories are just a little too quirky, the narrative arc just not quite straightforward enough for me. He is clearly a good writer and captures feelings, moods, places well, but it felt a little like a chore every time I picked this up.
Emily Boivin
Oct 29, 2012 Emily Boivin rated it it was amazing
Richard Wagner
May 31, 2015 Richard Wagner rated it liked it
this is a real mixed bag. some of the stories are fantastic, others are just so-so. there were even a couple i didn't like at all.
Nov 13, 2012 Steve rated it did not like it
Shelves: fiction
Oct 19, 2015 Archerjoe rated it liked it
A few hits, some misses. Some stories that really didn't seem to fit in the collection.
Ellie  Dynek
Sep 13, 2014 Ellie Dynek rated it it was ok
Shelves: one-hit-wonders
An interesting collection of short stories, to be sure. However, I'm fairly certain that I won't be reading this again any time soon.
Nov 24, 2013 Shannon rated it liked it
It's hard to rate a collection of short stories. Some were great, others not so much. On the whole, however, I was a little disappointed
Blogbaas Van 'tVliegend Eiland
Oct 11, 2013 Blogbaas Van 'tVliegend Eiland rated it really liked it
I tried reading a few of the stories, but I just couldn't get into them.
Steve rated it it was amazing
Oct 30, 2015
Joseph Denardo
Joseph Denardo rated it did not like it
Dec 26, 2016
Kathleen rated it liked it
Jan 21, 2016
Dan rated it it was amazing
Apr 03, 2013
Sonnet rated it really liked it
Apr 10, 2013
Kat Asharya
Kat Asharya rated it liked it
Jan 27, 2013
Seth Forwood
Seth Forwood rated it liked it
Jun 25, 2014
Jim rated it it was amazing
Apr 18, 2016
Aura rated it it was ok
Jun 20, 2015
Paul Longstaffe
Paul Longstaffe rated it really liked it
Jul 12, 2013
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Hansen was born in Omaha, Nebraska, attended a Jesuit high school, Creighton Preparatory School and earned a Bachelor's degree in English from Creighton University in Omaha in 1970. Following military service, he earned an M.F.A. from the Iowa Writers' Workshop in 1974 and held a Wallace Stegner Creative Writing Fellowship at Stanford University. He later earned an M.A. in Spirituality from Santa ...more
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