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In Love & Trouble: Stories

3.99  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,235 Ratings  ·  71 Reviews
From the bestselling author of The Color Purple comes a powerful collection of stories following women as they bravely seek liberation from painful realities, including the story “Everyday Use.”

Here are stories of women traveling with the weight of broken dreams, with kids in tow, with doubt and regret, with memories of lost loves, with lovers who have their own hard past
ebook, 138 pages
Published November 22nd 2011 by Open Road Media (first published 1973)
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Apr 24, 2014 Lucynell rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-highlights
For what it's worth I think In Love and Trouble is the best thing I read so far this year. As usual, I didn't see it coming. Maybe I should - that Southern Gothic link, but I think I was distracted by all the feminism and racial talk that surrounds Alice Walker's work. Subjects that I tend to avoid unless I am absolutely sure I'm not traveling down the same old same old. If that's what interests you the most (feminism and racial politics) you'll have your fill, no worries, and probably more than ...more
Courtney H.
Feb 05, 2015 Courtney H. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The stories are fantastic, almost too much so. Each story plunges you into a fully realized world of characters and circumstances, the kind of world that could propel an entire novel. And Walker is so good at making these character breathe for us, so good at making their concerns and lives vital to the readers, that it's like a slap in the face when the story ends and a new story abruptly begins--on the very next page, with not even a blank page to give us a moment to digest and mourn what we lo ...more
Feb 12, 2008 Deirdre rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a beautiful collection of short stories. "The Welcome Table," is a story I return to again and again. I have used it in my classes and find the students respond to it quite well.
Jun 26, 2016 Nea rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of my favorites by Alice Walker. The stories are rich, deep, and lyrical. Poetic prose you might say. Some in this collection are so sad, with no happy ending in sight. They leave your heart ripped open, your mind desperate for a more consoling conclusion. But isn't that life? Sometimes things just don't end well.

My absolute favorite is The Diary of an African Nun. Walker masterfully explored the internal spiritual conflict that plagues daughters of Africa, even when they don't know
(I read "Everyday Use," anthologized separately from this book. I'm going to mark this read for lack of having another way to add the story here.)

"Everyday Use" was interesting though not particularly moving to me. There is a lot to pull apart inside it: the limited narration of the poorly-educated and poorly-equipped mother, and the thematic contrasts between her adult daughters. The narration is good, and I liked it. The contrasts were less exciting.

Her daughter who's stayed home is sheltered
(FROM JACKET)Readers of Alice Walker's "The Color Purple" will find in these stories further evidence of her power to depict black women-women who vary greatly in background but are bound together by their vulnerability to life: Roselily, on her wedding day, surrounded by her four children, prays that a loveless marriage will bring her respectability; a young writer, exploited by both her lover and her husband, wreaks an ironic vengeance; a jealous wife, looking for her husband's mistress, finds ...more
Jul 08, 2014 Paul rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Paul by:
Obviously, Alice Walker possesses writing skills that exceeds those of most human beings. This book exhibited all of those, and more. To say that I've never read a better book would be unfair, I think. However, a lot of the writing had me spellbound. Some of the stories in this book transcended my, perhaps, common appreciation of literature. Or perhaps they just weren't her best work. On the other hand, some of these stories were like magic. They transported me to another dimension. It's writing ...more
Faith Justice
A collection of thirteen of Walker's earliest stories (published in 1973) and shows her developing maturity and genius. Collections of short stories are always difficult for me to rate because the stories affect and engage me differently. I usually end up with a middle of the road rating, so have decided not to rate the overall book, but talk about stories that I liked. Each story is distinct. A couple felt more like character sketches that Walker would develop later in her novels. Many characte ...more
I didn't have the time to read all the stories but this collection has one of my favorite short stories that I was able to track down again thanks to David W. "The Revenge of Hannah Kemhuff" tells the story of a woman wronged and now, near death, all she wants is revenge. It is one of those short stories where every word is perfect, and it will stay with you for a long time.
Max Nightjar
Sep 03, 2015 Max Nightjar rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is from one of the best authors ever, Alice Walker. I read this book in the late eighty's and was inspired by the collection's (of short stories) honesty of relationships and of women being vulnerable. I especially enjoyed the relationships between different women in this book of different races. Think, The Maids, and Women Of Brewster place that came along much later.
Alice Walker is in a class with the likes of Toni Morrison, Joyce Carol Oates, and Flannery'Oconnor, so need I say more.
Fans of Flannery O'Connor should definitely check out this most perfect collection of short stories. While firmly placed in a Southern Gothic tradition, Walker's collection carves out something distinctly hers—a bold artistic space to apply her Womanist values to Southern Black women in all sorts of crisis. These stories are experimental, poetic, and often beautiful (even when they describe ugliness, and there is plenty of ugliness here) as they look unflinchingly at racism, sexism, human longin ...more
Christopher Fraser
The original subtitle for this book was “stories of black women”, and I wonder why this edition decided to truncate it; after all, the stories in this (fairly small) collection are rooted in a series of very specific perspectives that, speaking as someone who can’t claim expertise on any of the pithy descriptors on the jacket copy (not a woman, not black, not from the southern states of the USA), felt profoundly different to my own experience and the experiences of those around me.

Maybe that’s t
Feb 05, 2012 Rowena rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: afrocentric
Nice collection of short stories, some I liked more than others.
Jan 05, 2013 Velvetink marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
ebook version
Although I did love the short stories & had a few favorites among them...I am just not one who likes more than one story compiled into one book, I tend to get really bored come the Second story and beyond...No matter how good all of the stories are.

Now, if I had owned the book..I may have taken the stories a little slower, but I rented this copy from the library and wanted to finish all of the stories before I took it back because I knew I probably wouldnt have gone back to get the book.

Jun 25, 2008 Jacqueline rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2007-2008
In Love and Trouble was a really great collection of short stories by Alice Walker. Walker does a good job expressing the struggles many Black women from the South face. She discusses issues such as gaining the respect her characters desire, fulfilling hard-to-achieve dreams, and obtaining life's necessities.

Of the thirteen stories, the one I enjoyed reading the most was "The Welcome Table", which was about an old woman who was physically thrown out of a white church by the white people who were
Nov 15, 2014 Katy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I rated this 3 stars as half of the book I adored and the other half seemed a bit disjointed and the plot didn't interest me. My favourites without a doubt were:

Really, Doesn't Crime Pay
Her Sweet Jerome
Everyday Use
The Welcome Table
Strong Horse Tea

Walkers writing is stunning and packs a serious punch. She describes the people in her stories with intricate precision and I look forward to reading a full novel by her soon.
Jun 22, 2016 Rakeesha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First off EVERYTHING by Miss Walker is fine by me. This did remind me of the Color Purple a little bit, but only because the author is such a great storyteller. I would recommend this to all my friends and a few enemies. Here are stories about the difficult, beautiful, and triumphant lives of black women in the South.
Eric Susak
Jan 08, 2016 Eric Susak rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Alice Walker consistently blows my mind. Her characters are diverse and vibrant; her stories are succinct and poignant; her sentences sentences say more than the words that compose them; her grasp of the intricacies of micro- and macro-social interactions always help me understand a new aspect of our world. My only regret in reading Walker's work is that I waited so long to start.
Jun 12, 2016 Nadine rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've finally finished reading this book. I've been working on it for the whole day and finally cranked it out. I think it deserves some attention because it sheds light on some stories of african american women. It also has some very serious moments but can be an easy read at the same time
Devon Fritz
Apr 12, 2016 Devon Fritz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: english, fiction
Found this in a public bookshelf, so I plucked it out. My first Alice Walker book, unfortunately. This book gave me a much better perspective on what it must (have) be(en) like to be a black woman. A couple of the stories were really good, and most were decent.
Nicole Wales
In Love and Trouble is an insightful piece, but slightly hard to follow. It has a unique setup: some stories read like a poem and others are journal entries... The stories touch upon serious situations black women face such as marriage, children, religion, etc.
Sarah Winkley Vezeau
Short stories set in the 70s or earlier. Some of them seemed like outlines for longer novels. It must have been the mood I was in when I was reading the book. I was happy to be done. Though some characters are still stuck in my head.
Priscilla Johnson
Timeless short stories that inspire me every time I feel sad and want a pick me up. I love Alice's dedication to the heart of a woman's joy and pain.
Sep 07, 2014 Katie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Alice Walker is an amazing writer. These short stories are sometimes sweet, often sad, and always powerfully written.
An uneven collection. Some stories absolutely beautiful and devastating and others I could do without.
Ross Esmil
Feb 25, 2014 Ross Esmil rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
i just only read one but i will keep reading excellent writer!
I'm not always in the mood for short story collections but I decided to give this book a try when I saw a couple copies in my local thrift store. Since Walker is an established poet, I assumed her stories would be rich with character description and emotional nuance. I wasn't wrong; Walker does a great job placing the reader in the middle of each scene. Out of the 13 stories, my favorite is "Everyday Use" because it is a fascinating clash of perspectives, challenging the reader to consider the t ...more
Apr 13, 2016 Bookjunk rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-april
A bit too on the nose sometimes, but otherwise pretty decent.
Aug 21, 2015 Cerize rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own
A bit disturbing but a good read. I really loved Mr. Sweet's story above all others.
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Alice Walker, one of the United States’ preeminent writers, is an award-winning author of novels, stories, essays, and poetry. In 1983, Walker became the first African-American woman to win a Pulitzer Prize for fiction with her novel The Color Purple, which also won the National Book Award. Her other books include The Third Life of Grange Copeland, Meridian, The Temple of My Familiar, and Possessi ...more
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“… People have (with the help of conventions) oriented all their solutions toward the easy and toward the easiest side of the easy; but it is clear that we must hold to what is difficult; everything in Nature grows and defends itself in its own way and is characteristically and spontaneously itself, seeks at all costs to be so and against all opposition. —Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet” 0 likes
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