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Women and Ghosts

3.47  ·  Rating Details ·  155 Ratings  ·  30 Reviews
The author of The War Between the Tates and the Pulitzer prize-winning Foreign Affairs now brings her irresistible wit to the ghost story.
In nine spooky tales, Alison Lurie writes of women haunted by ghosts both literal and metaphorical: A woman about to marry Mr. Right is visited by the spirit of his first wife; a dead fiancé haunts a foreign service officer every time s
Paperback, 192 pages
Published March 7th 1995 by Nan A. Talese (first published August 1st 1994)
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Feb 24, 2010 Jo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A collection of eerie short stories about haunted women at moments of crisis and decision in their lives. Well written, wryly amusing at times, chilling at others. A short, enjoyable read.
I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the stories included in this collection- especially after reading earlier comments here on goodreads where readers gave a review of "lame." I guess I should've know from that unimaginative adjective that I shouldn't rely too heavily on those opinions.

This collection is elegant, intuitive, and imaginative. Society is becoming increasingly obsessed with the paranormal world, and these stories are able to integrate elements of that obsession without bein
Deborah Markus
Jul 15, 2013 Deborah Markus rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of my favorite books. I reread it incessantly. All of the stories enjoy the benefit of Lurie's finely developed sense of humor, even the ones that end on an eerie note. And Lurie is deeply creative, playing merrily with exactly what qualifies as a ghost. A haunted piece of furniture? Visitations from a woman who's still alive (and may not even realize she's "haunting" her ex-husband's new fiancée)? A fertility goddess manifesting in our world just for a moment (maybe)?

Some of the sto
Dec 06, 2013 Saara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A little gem of a collection, Women & Ghosts held me enthralled with its tales. Ten women come face to face with something not quite of this world and find themselves wondering if they have in fact gone mad. We cannot be sure, and that's part of the charm.

I have lately come to appreciate the supernatural genre, so when I found the little paperback in a box of our late professor's books that had been donated to my student guild, I decided to pick it up and see whether it was a good read. Now
Eugenea Pollock
Oct 05, 2016 Eugenea Pollock rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a super Halloween treat, full of clever literary tricks. My favorite 5-star stories were The Double Poet, In the Shadow, and Another Halloween. Very creative twists on what is meant by the word "ghost."
Carol Masciola
Jan 26, 2017 Carol Masciola rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An eerie and enaging collection of ghostly stories -- not always about ghosts in the usual sense. A woman engaged to be married keeps seeing the phantom-like manifestation of her finance's ex-wife wedged in a space on the kitchen floor next to the refrigerator, a poet becomes convinced that she has a lookalike somewhere giving readings, signing books and pretending to be her, etc. I wouldn't give every single story five stars, but the best ones (including these I mentioned) I would! Wonderful wr ...more
Viv Eliot
Jan 08, 2017 Viv Eliot rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Such pretentious garbage!
My first exposure to Lurie's work, this collection of short stories was a fun read. Most of the stories featured in this small collection were reminiscent of a classic Victorian or Edwardian ghost story. A great little tome (little being the sticking word; there are only nine stories and the entire volume is under 200pages), especially if you're after a classic type of story told from an exclusively feminine lens and voice.
Louise Beilby
Jan 30, 2015 Louise Beilby rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What an intriguing and frequently funny collection of stories this is.

I picked up this book at a BookCrossing meetup, and didn't have high hopes for it because there was nothing on the cover which indicated if it was a novel or a series of stories, or what it was about. In retrospect, the title is a giveaway - it's about a number of very different women who all have an unsettling experience with a spirit, or, in one case, an apparently possessed piece of furniture. That was my favourite of the s
I'm not the biggest fan of short stories, I find there is never enough time given to each story. However I enjoyed these ghost stories. I didn't find any of them scary though which was a shame becuase I kinda like being creeped out. I liked ' Something Borrowed, Something Blue' best but didn't really want it to end there. And 'The Double Poet' was my least favorite, I felt it dragged on to much. One of the short stoires that could have been shorter!
Jul 07, 2012 Pennywise rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have recently discovered Alison Lurie, through this paperback lent to me by a friend. I will be buying my own copy and more. Humorous and haunting, this is a series of tales about women in some odd situations – but are they haunted or not? It is this very uncertainty that makes the stories so clever and so memorable. And the author never gives it away, you make up your own mind. Extremely cleverly done, and beautifully written. I shall be getting hold of this lady’s entire backlist ASAP.
Patricia O'Brien
Each one of these stories is a gem. The characters are complex and well drawn. I read the book years ago and am still haunted by some of these stories. It is Beautifully written.

There are some bad reviews on Goodreads from people with a taste for young adult fiction of the paranormal type. The characters and situations in this book are fully adult and this book will appeal to a more sophisticated audience.

Shawna Melville
I was looking for a different book and this book literally fell off the shelf! I liked the title and so I decided to read it. I thought each "Ghost Story" was well written and entertaining. The tales were not too long and it was an easy, light read. I especially enjoyed the story about the wicked piece of antique furniture.
I am going to look at other books by this author
Korie K
Jun 12, 2008 Korie K rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

SoW isn't keeping my interest right now, so I grabbed this off the shelf. It has short stories about women and their ghostly encounters. So far, it is kinda lame. Either I'll finish it quickly and be done or they will pick up and I'll savor them. The stories are short, so either way...I'll finish this book soon.


Totally lame if you ask me. I'm glad it is over.
Finished! - & a bit sooner than expected as I didn't want to put the book down 'til I was at the end of a tale :o)

After reading them all my favourites are still the two I mentioned previously. The only one I didn't particularly care for was Fat People but overall I really enjoyed these tales with their hints of the supernatural.
Becky Horan-Rosato
I was looking forward to reading this book due to the synopsis of the plot and the reputation of the author. Overall, I was under impressed. I found that the plot lacked depth and became quite predictable after the first few short stories. I would read one more of Ms. Lurie's books before giving up on her, but was definitely underwhelmed.
Dec 29, 2010 Diane rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This was lame. I only pulled it off the shelf while I waited for something better to come along. The only thing that saved it was that they were short stories, so not a whole lot of time invested. I'm marking it as read even though I only made it through 3 stories.
An easy read between two bigger books! Some of the stories didn't really do it for me, there were a couple I really enjoyed though, and 1 that I was disappointed when it was so short, and really thought it could have been a full length novel!
Suzie Grogan
May 02, 2015 Suzie Grogan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a wonderful little book. Some traditional ghost stories mixed with stories with greater psychological depth. The double poet was particularly disturbing in its depiction of breakdown. Good stuff.
Nov 30, 2009 Dee rated it liked it
A collection of short stories about, as the title suggests, women and ghosts. Entertaining but not exceptional.
Mar 20, 2011 Diana is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
short story format, some forgetable but I really liked "The Highboy" and "Fat People". I would recommend it
Margaret Dillon
Jul 22, 2015 Margaret Dillon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't usually choose to read short stories, but this book was a delight. Who would have thought that ghosts could come in such variety?
May 09, 2016 Emma rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A work of pure genius - just wish there were more stories; I could have carried on reading these gems for weeks!
Jul 30, 2011 Rachel added it
I definitely have favourite stories from this collection; Ilse's House, The Pool People and In the Shadow.
Susan rated it really liked it
Aug 25, 2015
Mareen rated it really liked it
May 23, 2012
Madelyn rated it liked it
Feb 18, 2011
Sep 29, 2013 David rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
If this book was a colour it'd be beige
Gail Dorothy
Gail Dorothy rated it really liked it
Sep 28, 2012
BookBully rated it really liked it
Jun 15, 2011
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Alison Lurie (b. 1926) is a Pulitzer Prize–winning author of fiction and nonfiction. Born in Chicago and raised in White Plains, New York, she joined the English department at Cornell University in 1970, where she taught courses on children’s literature, among others. Her first novel, Love and Friendship (1962), is a story of romance and deception among the faculty of a snowbound New England colle ...more
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