maandag 14 september 2015

Richard Yates: Eleven Kinds of Loneliness


Eleven Kinds of Loneliness is my third Richard Yates novel. I got it from The Book Depository and it has 221 pages.
This is his first collection of short stories.
You can find all my reviews on the novels I’ve read by Richard Yates here.

“Richard Yates's unflinchingly realistic stories explore loneliness, but they don't neglect failure, cruelty, and heartbreak. Most of the stories feature men who have been disappointed, somehow, by their inability to fulfill the promise of their youth.”

I love Yates and even though I found the quality of these short stories mixed I still enjoyed this collection very much.

Each story speaks of someone who doesn’t feel as happy as he/she should or could be.
Every one of them attributes this unhappiness to their job, their marriage or certain circumstances they find themselves in even though most of the characters are not entirely blameless (aren’t we all?).
Ultimately each and every one of them is lonely in one way or another. Maybe they aren’t really noticed, they might be dissatisfied with life, they are men needing their wives income to sustain themselves or teachers who are despised by their pupils; they are all lonely, unhappy, flawed and deluded people.
These stories are about loneliness and all its faces, with or without other people.
This is apparently a theme in a lot of Yates’ work. And I know I’m not even halfway through reading his work I can say that I’m pretty sure I will read a lot more on this topic in his other novels.
But I love this.

It is written as if I’m there. Every conversation rings true, every situation is realistic and every character is fully rounded.

This novel made me feel so sad, so grateful for what I have but also so full of sorrow for what I’ve lost. There’s seldom any form of hope in his work.

I loved this collection.

Happy reading!