Ten superb new stories by one of our most beloved and admired writersthe winner of the 2009 Man Booker International Prize. In the first story a young wife and mother receives release from the unbearable pain of losing her three children from a most surprising source. In another, a young woman, in the aftermath of an unusual and humiliating seduction, reacts in a clever if less-than-admirable fashion. Other stories uncover the “deep-holes” in a marriage, the unsuspected cruelty of children, and how a boy’s disfigured face provides both the good things in his life and the bad. And in the long title story, we accompany Sophia Kovalevskya late-nineteenth-century Russian émigré and mathematicianon a winter journey that takes her from the Riviera, where she visits her lover, to Paris, Germany, and, Denmark, where she has a fateful meeting with a local doctor, and finally to Sweden, where she teaches at the only university in Europe willing to employ a female mathematician. With clarity and ease, Alice Munro once again renders complex, difficult events and emotions into stories that shed light on the unpredictable ways in which men and women accommodate and often transcend what happens in their lives. Too Much Happiness is a compelling, provocativeeven daringcollection.
“As poignant [and] chilling as they come. . . . Why [Munro] is rightly regarded as a master of the form is her deliberate, suspenseful layering of characters and circumstances. . . . Every story in Too Much Happiness is, in a sense, a life story. . . . It’s as if the characters are reading along with these mini life lessons, emerging with enviable wisdom and perspective.” The L Magazine “Munro is the master of the inevitable surprise. . . . [She] has an uncanny ability to take us inside a character’s mind.” The St. Petersburg Times “Few writers can match the clarity and immediacy of Munro’s de*ions whether she is portraying a subsiding marriage, a treacherous childhood, or the erotic and intellectual sojourn of a 19th century Russian mathematician.” The Boston Globe “These ten short stories cement the capstone on what fellow Canadian Margaret Atwood has described as Munro’s ascent to ‘international literary sainthood’. . . . The title story . . . is, in length and scope, Munro’s most ambitious story to date. . . . May this house of hers, and its autumnal gardens, continue to be harvested to glorious effect.” The Oregonian
Alice Munro grew up in Wingham, Ontario, and attended the University of Western Ontario. She has published eleven new collections of stories-Dance of the Happy Shades; Something I've Been Meaning to Tell You; The Beggar Maid; The Moons of Jupiter; The Progress of Love; Friend of My Youth; Open Secrets; The Love of a Good Woman; Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage; Runaway; and a volume of Selected Stories-as well as a novel, Lives of Girls and Women. During her distinguished career she has been the recipient of many awards and prizes, including the Man Booker International Prize, three of Canada's Governor General's Literary Awards and two of its Giller Prizes, the Rea Award for the Short Story, the Lannan Literary Award, England's W. H. Smith Book Award, the United States' National Book Critics Circle Award, and the Edward MacDowell Medal in literature. Her stories have appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, The Paris Review, and other publications, and her collections have been translated into thirteen languages.Alice Munro divides her time between Clinton, Ontario, near Lake Huron, and Comox, British Columbia.