Phyllis Schieber Author

Women's Fiction by Phyllis Schieber

Last week I read the New York Times review of Anne Tyler’s most recent novel, Noah’s Compass. Admittedly, the review was not without deserved admiration for the talent of the remarkable Anne Tyler, but the review was also laced with more criticism than praise. I understand it is the  job of a reviewer to parse all aspects of a work, but really, this is Anne Tyler we’re talking about. No one can do what she does: expose the very core of what makes us human. Moreover, Tyler is one of the few contemporary writers who has the courage and the skill to write from a male point of view. I find this a remarkable achievement in and of itself. With that said, I am reading Noah’s Compass with full delight. The characters are, as are all Tyler characters, quirky, interesting, endearing, and compelling for their ability to make us care about them and their lives. And if this isn’t enough, what about this line: “He studied her like a language.” Oh, how I wish I had written that line! That line alone makes the book worth reading.

No one writes like Anne Tyler.  She pulls us in gently, but firmly, and insists that we ask ourselves what it really means to be human, to be flawed, and yet to be able to love so completely that we become, like Liam, better people even to ourselves


January 20, 2010 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , ,

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