Hey Yeah Right Get A Life

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9780099284222: Hey Yeah Right Get A Life

This collection, Helen Simpson's third and best yet, is a loosely linked set of stories about women - at work, at home and on holiday - that is poignant, perceptive, often sad and frequently funny.

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Review:

Hey Yeah Right Get a Life, Helen Simpson's third collection of short stories, is about the hectic day-to-day whirlpool of women's lives--women who want to improve their lot, women who yearn to "get a life" better than their own. When she writes about child care it is with a knowing honesty about the accompanying sacrifices and tribulations--from the highly efficient businesswoman who "had a beautiful house and she was never in it. She knew what the children were doing at every hour of the day and she wasn't there", to the stay-at-home wife who "would stand and wait for herself to grow still and the image was one of an ancient vase, crackle-glazed, still in one piece but finely crazed all over its surface". Simpson is superb at conveying the intense frustration and yet maddening love that children inspire.

Each story complements the others, even the rather macabre "Millennium Blues", as Simpson's characters bustle around, meaning well, and occasionally reappearing (Dorrie in the title story also features in "Hurrah for the Hols"). She doesn't waste a word and her ear for dialogue is acute--her description of a female banker's interpretation of a corporate Burns night in "Burns and the Bankers", for example, is both excruciating and hilarious--and she manages to blend both humour and poetry into the scurrying days of her characters.

In some ways, many of the stories feel more like a face-pressed-against-the-window peer into other people's experiences rather than finite stories and the reader longs to learn more about the characters and discover how things worked out. Hey Yeah Right Get a Life is a wonderfully written and involving collection of stories that will have a high-recognition factor for many readers. --Christina McLoughlin

Review:

"It's a brilliant, painful, funny and courageous book" (Esther Freud Guardian)

"Simply tremendous... She is a witch, with the surest hand in contemporary fiction" (Philip Hensher Spectator)

"Her limpid, chaste, luscious fiction describes real lives" (John Lancaster Daily Telegraph)

"Her stories are - for those who, like me, recognise the truth in every word - like a reprieve... Sharp, poetic and marvellously witty" (Kate Kellaway Observer)

"Motherhood has long been a subscription-only sort of subject. Helen Simpson has found a way to tell it, and I hope that people beyond the constituency margins are listening" (Rachel Cusk Evening Standard)

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Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 194 x 128 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. This collection, Helen Simpson s third and best yet, is a loosely linked set of stories about women - at work, at home and on holiday - that is poignant, perceptive, often sad and frequently funny. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780099284222

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Book Description Vintage Publishing, United Kingdom, 2001. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 194 x 128 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. This collection, Helen Simpson s third and best yet, is a loosely linked set of stories about women - at work, at home and on holiday - that is poignant, perceptive, often sad and frequently funny. Bookseller Inventory # AAZ9780099284222

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