Margaret Atwood, whose work has been published in thirty-five
countries, is the author of more than forty books of fiction,
poetry, and critical essays. In addition to The Handmaid's
Tale, her novels include Cat's Eye, short-listed for the
1989 Booker Prize; Alias Grace, which won the Giller Prize
in Canada and the Premio Mondello in Italy; The Blind
Assassin, winner of the 2000 Booker Prize; Oryx and
Crake, short-listed for the 2003 Man Booker Prize; The Year
of the Flood; and her most recent, MaddAddam. She is the
recipient of the Los Angeles Times Innovator's Award, and lives in
Toronto with the writer Graeme Gibson.
(See Prepub Alert, LJ 5/1/06) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
An intriguing patchwork of poignant episodes, Atwood's latest set of stories (after The Tent) chronicles 60 years of a Canadian family, from postwar Toronto to a farm in the present. The opening piece of this novel-in-stories is set in the present and introduces Tig and Nell, married, elderly and facing an uncertain future in a world that has become foreign and hostile. From there, the book casts back to an 11-year-old Nell excitedly knitting garments for her as yet unborn sister, Lizzie, and continues to trace her adolescence and young adulthood; Nell rebels against the stern conventions of her mother's Toronto household, only to rush back home at 28 to help her family deal with Lizzie's schizophrenia. After carving out a "medium-sized niche" as a freelance book editor, Nell meets Oona, a writer, who is bored with her marriage to Tig. Oona has been searching for someone to fill "the position of second wife," and she introduces Nell to Tig. Later in life, Nell takes care of her once vital but now ravaged-by-age parents. Though the episodic approach has its disjointed moments, Atwood provides a memorable mosaic of domestic pain and the surface tension of a troubled family. (Sept. 19) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
"Sharply focused, intensely personal. . . . Moral
Disorder is domestic realism at its most convincing. . . .
These are poignant stories crammed with richly nostalgic detail,
rueful, wise, elegiac." -Joyce Carol Oates, The New York Review
"Elegant. . . . In Moral Disorder, Atwood travels deep into the expanse of memories and language built up over her writing lifetime and offers a handful of gems to illuminate our times." -The Los Angeles Times Book Review
"Poignant. . . . Wry. . . . The tremendous imaginative power of [Atwood's] fiction allows us to believe that anything is possible." -New York Times Book Review
"Searingly intelligent. . . . [These are] beguiling narratives that Atwood unspools with signature grace and incisiveness." -Elle