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Other People's Love Affairs

3.62  ·  Rating details ·  119 ratings  ·  23 reviews
In the classic tradition of fiction by James Joyce, William Trevor, and Elizabeth Strout, these interconnected stories will strike a deep and resounding emotional chord.

In the ten luminous stories of D. Wystan Owen’s Other People’s Love Affairs, the people of Glass, a picturesque village on the rugged English coast, are haunted by longings and deeply held secrets, captive
Paperback, 224 pages
Published August 21st 2018 by Algonquin Books
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3.62  · 
Rating details
 ·  119 ratings  ·  23 reviews

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Diane S ☔
Sep 21, 2018 rated it liked it
Review soon.
Martie Nees Record
Sep 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Genre: Literary Fiction
Publisher: Algonquin Books
Pub. Date: August 21, 2018

My first thought, once I finished the last page of this connected short story collection, was that the author, D. Wystan Owen, manages to pen a book to the Beatles’ song “Eleanor Rigby.” With its lyrics of, “All the lonely people, Where do they all come from? All the lonely people, Where do they all belong?” This mostly brilliant ten story collection follows the lives of characters who live in the same coastal English vi
Kasa Cotugno
Usually I read short story collections over a period of days, particularly if they are exceptionally fine. I've said in other reviews that when good, short stories are hard work for a reader and to honor the author, must be sipped over time. However, since today is the launch date (preventing me from getting an early copy) and I was planning on seeing Mr. Owen tonight, I read them completely in one afternoon.

Not a dud in the bunch. Each story contains an element of loss blanketed in secrets, an
Catherine ♡
Jul 25, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: short-stories
Unfortunately this one didn't work for me. I really liked some of the writing, and the author definitely has a way with words that plays with beautiful figurative language. Overall, however, I just felt a little lost reading this book, and I don't think the stories were really exciting or engaging enough for me. They all sort of had the same calm vibe, and I think a little more variety in atmosphere would also help. I definitely think this was a matter of personal preference, and I think people ...more
Sally Drake
Feb 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
A quiet, poignant story collection about the odd residents of Glass, English coastal town. The characters are odd—lonely, isolated and awkward but searching for love and companionship in their own ways.
Aug 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I entered the Goodreads giveaway for (and won) this book mostly because I really love the short story form. And the stories here are astonishingly good. The writing is simply gorgeous; Owens really knows how to craft a melodious, meaningful sentence. Here's a random example: "[T]he fog had given way to a rain. It fell steadily, softly, without any purpose, a sound like handfalls of dry, scattered seed." As he's an MFA grad, I'm not surprised by this talent, but I am impressed. He can really draw ...more
Roslynne Levine
Oct 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: literature
This is a very small, understated book. I gave it 4 stars because the author writes beautifully. But otherwise, it's a 3 or 3 1/2. The blurb says it's interconnected stories, but it's not. Though the stories all have an attachment to the same village, the characters from one story don't show up in others. I really wanted to love this book, but honestly, I got bored. Each story was about someone, and yet, I never felt like I got to know the characters very well. Most weren't that interesting. I f ...more
Jul 27, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: give-aways
The stories in this book are pretty ... but there’s no real meat to them. It’s as though the reader is meandering through ten different books, which I know this is a short story book, but the short stories themselves are incomplete, no real substance or conflict. I felt some of the language used was out of touch with society, as though I was reading something from the 30s or 40s... which is fine if it’s intentional, but there was no clear time period, so it was just confusing. This irritated me ...more
Apr 27, 2019 rated it liked it
I really enjoyed how all the short stories were set in the same small town, presumably around the same time. Very little mention of technology was made, but it could have been there--- which gave the stories a very timeless and universal feeling. A lot of the action happened inside a main character's thoughts which gave it all a dreamy kind of ephemeral haze. Pretty stories. A few made me feel WOW, most made me feel HM but a few were MEH. Good to read before bed for sure and some really do stand ...more
Oct 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
A sophisticated, tender, emotionally generous collection, peopled with deeply imagined characters, of ordinary people facing the heartbreak of circumstance, of cravings, of vices, of claiming a bit more than they are owed. Their human missteps make readers ache because we are quietly and deeply led into their psyche; we miraculously suffer and crumble with them. An other mark of mastery in this collection is that the stories are shared by multiple protagonists, layering the dimension and drama, ...more
˗ˏˋ maddie ˊˎ˗
Apr 01, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: giveaway-wins
full disclosure: i received an arc through a goodreads giveaway.

the stories were good and i liked that the city of glass was a common through line, but the style was antiquated and never smoothed into something easy to read, instead bumpy and stilted throughout, reading like a time period with rotary phones until someone pulled out a cell. it constantly made me aware i was reading a story rather than getting lost in one.
Feb 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
What a lovely, sad, tender book this is! Other People's Love Affairs is a collection of short stories all connected through the town of Glass and by the theme of love. They are heartfelt explorations of all sorts of love: romantic, platonic, lost love, love that never was, etc. A quiet novel that touched my heartstrings.
Nov 21, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: library, m, short-stories
There is some good writing here just nothing I could connect to. It felt as if Owen gave himself an assignment to write a collection about love, set them all in the same small village and make them all approximately 18-22 pages in length.
Sep 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book was a beautiful collection of stories depicting the loves and lives of a series of people within the village. This was a page turner for me. I found it interesting to delve into the secrets and hidden lives.
Margaret Tran
Dec 20, 2018 rated it it was ok
Book was like a poorly written version of Love Actually. Both my little sister and I agreed that the stories didn’t feel like they were going anywhere.
Juan Cavelier
Oct 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful style, rich language, lovely descriptions. A great new author with a series of short stories that you truly enjoy from beginning to end. Already waiting for his next book.
Mar 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Wonderful stories. Simple and yet elegant, they touch on the kinds of love we don't usually think about. They show us the heart of a small English town and the hearts of the people who live there.
Marguerite Alley
Dec 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
all the endings were superb
Feb 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This story collection is gorgeous. I cried at the end of the first story, and I finished in just a couple days.
Jul 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-won
I won a copy of this book.

Really nice book of short stories. 10 stories in all, this was a nice and quick read.
Paulo Santos
Feb 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a very nice book, sweet and moving. I was reminded of Raymond Carver, one of my favourite short stories writer. Owen's stories are beautiful, the writing is elegant and insightful. His characters feel real, and he manages to depict a world of emotions and feelings in short stories, which is just remarkable in a writer.
Nov 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I won this book off Goodreads. Highly recommend. A must read.
Dec 04, 2018 rated it did not like it
I’m learning that short stories about every day moments just don’t interest me. Couldn’t finish this collection.
Ayelet Ronen
rated it really liked it
Aug 09, 2018
Hannah Brown
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Nov 20, 2018
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Jan 13, 2019
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Dec 08, 2018
Kelsey Davenport
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Mar 09, 2019
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Dec 16, 2018
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May 30, 2019
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