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Laments for the Living, Collected Stories

4.05  ·  Rating Details ·  116 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
Paperback, 362 pages
Published 1995 by Quality Paperback Book Club (first published 1930)
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Community Reviews

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Sparrow
Jun 08, 2013 Sparrow rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Sparrow by: Elizabeth
This was one of those generous gifts that I’ve felt really bad about not reading immediately upon opening. Elizabeth sent this to me a year or two ago, and I knew right away what a lovely present it was because it is one of those beautiful, old hardcovers with worn pages and soft binding, and it was a book by a woman author I had never read but always wanted to read. It definitely fulfilled all its promise.

The early stories in this collection are funnier and maybe more quippy, maybe just lighter
...more
Belinda
Nov 11, 2010 Belinda rated it it was amazing
Amazing book--full of all the hallmarks of Dorothy Parker's infamous style. Snappy, full of wit and acid and incredibly amusing and true to life relations between men and women. However I think the true treasures here are to be found in her stories dealing with race. I don't know how many of her readers are aware of it, but Mrs. Parker left her estate to the Martin Luther King foundation and was later transferred to the NAACP who finally gave her ashes somewhere to rest (with a lovely plaque ...more
Molly
Jan 07, 2016 Molly rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kaitlyn Barrett
Mar 21, 2012 Kaitlyn Barrett rated it really liked it
I can see how she got her fame because these stories are fantastic. I’m even overcoming my usual aversion to short stories to keep plowing through them.

I love the way Parker turns her writing sideways and tells stories through thoughts, monologues and what isn’t said. She never takes the obvious route. Clearly she’s a master technician who wanted to find more interesting ways to tell stories than just tell them. I love the monologue of the girl waiting for the telephone to ring. Been. There.

The
...more
Julia
Aug 09, 2013 Julia rated it liked it
3.5. The stories are witty and tragic, often simultaneously, yet as a collection it is uneven. I found myself feeling like I'd been reading the same story over several pieces. I think the messages were more pertinent-and thus the stories more effective as satire for the reader - at the time they were written. Still, her execution is undeniably cutting, and her messages about mental illness are relevant today.
Kerry
Aug 09, 2011 Kerry rated it liked it
A treat to read. Compared unfavorably though to my favorite short story writer, Hector Hugh Munro aka Saki! ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saki ) Both shed hilarious light on the foibles and pretensions of the early 20th c upper class, with Parker also satirizing the pre-feminist woman. But I kept hoping for more Saki-like endings, where the underdog comes out on top in a sweetly vindicating twist.
Jordan
Apr 09, 2015 Jordan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You've seen Rear Window, right? Well, Dorothy Parker covers all those other windows.

You know, the windows without all the murder.

And she delivers elegant, moving, incisive glimpses of those little desperate moments that we call life. Or lust. Probably more lust.

Buy this title from Powell's Books.
carl  theaker
Jan 28, 2011 carl theaker rated it really liked it
Shelves: fancy-fiction


Especially if you are interested in the Jazz Age or its 1930s
hangover Dorothy Parker is one of those writers you often hear about
but when all is said, you realize you've never read anything
actually written by her.

Inspired by the flic 'A Vicious Circle' to read something
by Parker I received this collection of her short stories as
a gift. It is a good read of 24 of her tales.
Kecia
Jan 11, 2008 Kecia rated it really liked it
Dorothy Parker! What a smarty pants! She cracks me up!!! If you only read one Parker story I highly recommend Big Blonde...it's has all of Parker hallmarks. I really got a kick out of Clothe the Naked, Horsie, and You Were Perfectly Fine. The other stories all seem to blend together.
Jenny.p
Dec 22, 2012 Jenny.p rated it it was amazing
I count stumbling upon this book as one of the best things that happened this summer. I know that Dorothy Parker will be a life-long friend.
Rebecca
Oct 25, 2011 Rebecca rated it it was ok
I think, perhaps, reading straight through a collection of Dorothy Parker's writing is not the best approach. In smaller doses, I may have rated higher...
Lynne Marie
I found this at the used book store and mainly bought it because its the most beautiful book cover I've ever seen. Like wall paper. Though I do like Dorothy Parker and am really enjoying the stories.
Johnny
Johnny rated it it was amazing
Jan 16, 2014
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Fenia rated it it was amazing
Jan 16, 2014
Elizabeth
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Mar 15, 2008
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Apr 27, 2012
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Aug 08, 2016
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Lynn Clements rated it it was amazing
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Liz Mclaren rated it it was ok
Oct 05, 2010
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  • My World And Welcome To It
  • Six Tales of the Jazz Age (and Other Stories)
  • Notes From A Small Room
  • You Might as Well Live: The Life and Times of Dorothy Parker
  • Short Stories
  • Queenie
  • A Child Again
  • English Country House Murders:  Classic Crime Fiction of Britain's Upper Crust
  • The Benchley Roundup
  • The Collected Stories
  • Mrs. Dalloway's Party: A Short Story Sequence
  • Scoop!
  • A Likely Story: One Summer with Lillian Hellman
  • The Longest Journey
  • The Garden Party
  • Territorial Rights
  • Here at The New Yorker
  • Design for Living
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author by this name in the Goodreads data base.

Dorothy Parker was an American writer and poet best known for her caustic wit, wisecracks, and sharp eye for 20th century urban foibles. From a conflicted and unhappy childhood, Parker rose to acclaim, both for her literary output in such venues as The New Yorker and as a founding member of the Algonquin Round Ta
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