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The Lion in the Room Next Door

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3.22  ·  Rating Details ·  54 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
Episodes from a woman's life are reflected in this acclaimed collection of interrelated short stories from a sensational new talent. Booklist's starred review praised the work as "haunting . . . lush and concise. . . Each chapterlike story is complete by itself; together they tell of a woman's experiences, from childhood into her 40s-experiences of love and longing, the pa ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published June 1st 2001 by Berkley Trade (first published 1999)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Magdelanye
Familiarity can be such an obstacle, assumptions overlaying one
another until the true contour of the land is hopelessly lost. p167

Is it possible to get lost in your own life?
Try looking at it with a certain detachment. Create some kind of timeline. This could be as simple as chapter headings: first memories;childhood; a holiday; romance; before and after this or that person, discovery, milestone. Jazz it up with exquisite writing, retaining a sense of enigma, and there you have it, eloquent p
...more
Terri Kempton
Apr 28, 2009 Terri Kempton rated it really liked it
Fascinating collection of short stories, each one engaging and real and painful. I felt like this book punched me in the gut, leaving me sore for days.

There are some interesting aspects to Simonds' writing - the first is that each story in this collection builds on the others to form a quasi-autobiographical account of her life. It's like sixty years of living as shown in photographs from different time periods, vignettes of significant periods and turning points.

The second unique aspect of he
...more
Jeanna
Mar 28, 2009 Jeanna rated it really liked it
I read this book while on holiday in Brazil a couple of weeks ago. So good... The story begins in Brazil... the the setting changes to Canada. A little girl grows up, becomes a woman... and continues always to learn. Made me think about my life.
Louise
Mar 22, 2009 Louise rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
This was a wonderful collection of short stories that involve the life of one woman. I wasn't sure at first if I would like this book, but as it turns out I enjoyed it immensely. My favourite story was called "The Blue of the Madrugada". A story about the girl growing up and realizing her body has changed.

I'd highly recommend this book to anyone.

Suze
Sep 17, 2011 Suze rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories
This progression of related stories, based on the author’s life from childhood to middle-age, is full of beautiful imagery … clothing that bore the shape of my older sisters (p.22). Her writing is beautifully pared down as her eager-to-please personality navigates her life’s obstacles, and frees repressed emotion. Very engaging.
S.
To be honest I didn't make it through many of these stories. I didn't like the writing much and I didn't think the stories really held together. On the back it says the author "may be the next Alice Munro." But Alice Munro is the next Alice Munro and that's more than good enough for me.
Stephanie
Feb 22, 2008 Stephanie rated it really liked it
I learned about different places in the world. A series of connected short stories takes place over time, and each in a different world location, as the protoginist changes from daughter to wife to mother. Original and cathartic.
Debbie
Aug 09, 2011 Debbie rated it liked it
Pretty good collection of short stories.

Shannon (Twilight Sleep)
These stories had a lovely feel of ethereality, quite similar to what I experienced while reading White Oleander. Very interesting and definitely worth a read.
Gina
Jun 30, 2012 Gina rated it liked it
Beautiful writing but lost me at the end of most the stories.
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Based on letters found in a Kingston attic.
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290906
Merilyn Simonds is the author of sixteen books, including the creative nonfiction classic, The Convict Lover, a Governor General’s Award finalist and inspiration for the 2016 Judith Thompson play Hot House. Her collection of autobiographical stories, The Lion in the Room Next Door, was published internationally to acclaim and her novel, The Holding, was a New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice ...more
More about Merilyn Simonds...

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