A Bold Piece

Alice McDermott
Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $25, 232 pp.

Alice McDermott doesn’t do trendy. Verbal pyrotechnics aren’t part of her arsenal; making pronouncements on the way we live now isn’t her aim. There’s no head-spinning riffing on the classics, modern or otherwise, no stoking of dystopian anxieties. There may be eating, praying, and loving, but only to suggest the redemptive qualities of the quotidian, not as a prescription for happiness.

What McDermott does is immediacy. In clear, purposeful prose she examines the near at hand—...

The remainder of this article is only available to paid subscribers.

Print subscribers to Commonweal are entitled to free access to all premium online content. Click here to purchase a print subscription, or if you’re already a print subscriber, register now for premium access.

Online-only subscriptions provide access to all premium online articles for just $34/year or $2.95/month. Click here to subscribe.

Registered users, please log in below:

Or log in with...


About the Author

Dominic Preziosi is Commonweal’s digital editor.