Read This and Tell Me ...
A. Manette Ansay
Rate this book
Clear rating

Read This and Tell Me What It Says

3.77 of 5 stars 3.77  ·  rating details  ·  98 ratings  ·  9 reviews
In her first full-length story collection, author A. Manette Ansay explores the rural Midwest landscape and the people who inhabit it: ordinary folk with extraordinary inner lives, struggling to make sense of the isolated, sometimes painful, and often intensely religious worlds in which they live. Her are 15 haunting and exquisitely written tales that offer a rare and unfo...more
Paperback, 160 pages
Published by Harper Perennial (first published November 1st 1995)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Read This and Tell Me What It Says, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Read This and Tell Me What It Says

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 174)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
I'm getting to this book late (pub. in '95), but I devoured it. Another remainder bin find. I think it's interesting that I tend to love the remainder books more than the bestsellers I pick up. In any case, I've never had the privilege of reading Ansay before. I LOVED her prose and ability to imagine and narrate a story. Just a couple of passages:

"I remember the year it was rain that we prayed for, the death rattle of the crops our evening lullaby."

"The sun began rising; one bloody knuckle peeke...more
Ansay gets a lot of comparisons to Flannery O'Connor, which seems a little too convenient because they are both women who specialize in short stories. But while their settings, characters, and subject matter differ greatly, I’d have to agree, at least for this collection of short stories, that Ansay is able to conjure O'Connor’s remarkable gift to relate the unspoken facets of human nature. I really enjoyed every one of these stories and their uniquely broken characters.
I first saw Manette Ansay at a writers' conference, and picked up two or three of her books there (I believe "River Angel" was her newest at the time). A wonderful collection of short stories, and the title is something I wish I'd come up with.
Found this and knew the author from her debut novel. These stories are beautifully written but all have a sadness about them. The characters are often limited by circumstances, often religious. The stories do reveal the inner strength of the characters. I often felt overwhelmed and a little depressed after finishing a story; however that is not a criticism or discouragement to explore this collection. Ansay is a master of the craft.
Kay Baird
The stories in this collection are fierce little things: they bite. Reading them, I got depressed. I considered stopping and sending the book back to the library. But Ansay's insight is so sharp, her characters so vibrant, I wanted to hear everything she had to say. So I interspersed them with reading less challenging. Then at the end of the last story, my heart broke open in fierce joy. There's no thread of plot or character through the group, but they do build up to that finish. And it's not c...more
While I can see that Ansay is a technically good writer, I was so turned off by the characters in her stories that this book was just not for me. She's like the midwestern Flannery O'Connor, same weirdness. But something this book was just too unsettling for me.
When I saw the photograph of the author on the book jacket, I was sure that I'd read a short story of hers somewhere that blew me away. But I couldn't get into the first story, and am stopping.
pretty good short stories, but I had to stop because they were too much the same and all too depressing.
Short stories, nothing remarkable.
Kris marked it as to-read
Jul 16, 2014
Shane Dougall
Shane Dougall marked it as to-read
Jun 27, 2014
Ally marked it as to-read
May 19, 2014
Sami Storey
Sami Storey marked it as to-read
Jan 21, 2014
Kelly Zummo
Kelly Zummo marked it as to-read
Dec 14, 2013
Sandra Durkee
Sandra Durkee marked it as to-read
Sep 20, 2013
Megg Pascarella
Megg Pascarella marked it as to-read
Oct 29, 2013
Mallory marked it as to-read
Sep 05, 2013
Yesenia marked it as to-read
Sep 02, 2013
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
A. Manette Ansay grew up in Wisconsin among 67 cousins and over 200 second cousins. She is the author of six novels, including Good Things I Wish You (July, 2009), Vinegar Hill, an Oprah Book Club Selection, and Midnight Champagne, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, as well as a short story collection, Read This and Tell Me What It Says, and a memoir, Limbo. Her awards include...more
More about A. Manette Ansay...
Vinegar Hill  Blue Water Midnight Champagne Good Things I Wish You Sister

Share This Book