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Follies: New Stories

3.40  ·  Rating Details  ·  118 Ratings  ·  19 Reviews
Ann Beattie's Follies is a superb novella and collection of stories about adult children, aging parents, and the chance encounters that irrevocably alter lives. Beattie, winner of four O. Henry prizes, has been called "one of our era's most vital masters of the short form" (The Washington Post Book World). She is a masterful observer of domestic relations and the idiosyncr ...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published May 3rd 2005 by Scribner (first published 2005)
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Mar 14, 2008 Tim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Who can keep up with Ann Beattie? How many gazillion stories has she written? Why is there a faux-looking deer on the hardcover edition of this book, and a droopy-eyed dog on the paperback edition? These are mysteries I cannot begin to fathom (Leonard Nimoy, where are you?). Nor, exactly, can I fathom how these stories work so well, how in their deceptive simplicity they lull you into a sense of plain enjoyment, then take a few unexpected turns and you wind up someplace unexpected. Favorite so f ...more
Joan Colby
Mar 22, 2010 Joan Colby rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an excellent collection of stories by the acclaimed Ann Beattie. I much prefer her stories to her novels and count her among the finest currect story writers along with Alice Munro, Lorrie Moore and Jean Thompson.
Ruth Seeley
Sep 15, 2011 Ruth Seeley rated it liked it
As a long-time fan of Ann Beattie (we've very much grown up together in a literary sense, as I've read just about everything she's written as she wrote it), I caught myself admiring her always clinically incisive prose while wondering if I would be so wildly enthusiastic about her work if I were just starting to read her now or if I had started with this collection. A week after reading them, the only part of this collection I remember is the novella with which it begins (as opposed to some of t ...more
Sasha Martinez
I’ve been a Beattie fangirl ever since I listened to a teacher / friend / drinking buddy’s advice: “Carver. Moore. Beattie. They’ll change your life.” Looking at my shelf: I have six books of Beattie’s in different stages of Currently Reading.

With Follies, I have been skittish. I somehow sense, peeking between the covers, that Beattie is different. Mature, yes. Now an authority on the craft, of course. Something.

I tried reading “Fléchette Follies,” the novella she sneaked in there. And then I pr
Bookmarks Magazine

No one can resist comparing Beattie's grown baby boomers with their younger selves__the characters who appeared in her early short story collections. Those who were once young and aimless still lack direction__only in Follies, they're much older. This time, the author has given them a past, which is refreshing, especially as they contemplate typical middle-age concerns (parents in nursing homes, children in trouble, failed relationships, etc.). Beattie's careful language and dark wit is, as alwa

Feb 05, 2016 Alice rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent collection of stories, including a long one, that anyone can relate to. I have always liked her rather deadpan sense of humor and the way she nails characters so deftly.
Marked as a reminder to revisit this someday. Loved the title story--just didn't get around to finishing it.
A largely forgettable short story collection.
Apr 02, 2007 Michelle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Beattie fans, those who like short fiction.
I've been a fan of Ann Beattie's fiction and stories for about 20 years. This latest collection of stories didn't disappoint. She writes with wry wit, creating realistic, often tragicomic characters who are always intriguing.
Jan 22, 2009 Laura rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I always have a problem with short stories. They are over too soon. I read the first story in this book and enjoyed it very much. And you can't help but love that mug on the cover. Hope to pick it up again soon.
Jun 24, 2010 Katie rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
My first foray into Ann Beattie. I found her characters unengaging, and the stories were too sluggish(and unhappy) to keep me interested - luckily all but the first one were quite short.
My favorite story here is "The Rabbit Hole as Likely Explanation," which cracks me up everytime I read it -- so like myself and my mother....
Mar 04, 2007 Mickey rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: baby boomers
Enjoyed most of the short stories. They dealt with baby boomers in their maturity trying to sort out their lives and coping with aging parents.
Fun little stories about getting older. The most memorable story involves a car crash and a CIA agent and his untimely death.
Jul 28, 2011 Allison rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
she is one of the American short short masters. This collection includes a novella which is simply brilliant
Apr 16, 2009 Cherie rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Eh. I don't know, I usually love Ann Beattie but I found these stories weak and unengaging.
As much as I admire her, I had trouble with the stories set in Charlottesville.
Review from the Thought Lost List Of Books to Read: "ZZZ"
Abby Sominski
Mar 05, 2008 Abby Sominski rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My first foray into Ann Beattie and I was soon hooked.
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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 Americ ...more
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