Picture of author.

Karen Russell (1) (1981–)

Teoksen Swamplandia! tekijä

Katso täsmennyssivulta muut tekijät, joiden nimi on Karen Russell.

20+ teosta 7,606 jäsentä 412 arvostelua

Tietoja tekijästä

Karen Russell was born in Miami, Florida in 1981. Karen is the author of Swamplandia!, which was long-listed for the Orange Prize and was also included in the New York Times' "10 Best Books of 2011." She was named a National Book Foundation "5 Under 35" young writer honoree and received the Bard näytä lisää Fiction Prize in 2011 for her first book of short stories, St. Lucy's Home for Girls Raised by Wolves. Russell received a B.A. from Northwestern University and MFA program from Columbia University. (Bowker Author Biography) näytä vähemmän
Image credit: Joanne Chan

Sarjat

Tekijän teokset

Swamplandia! (2011) 3,619 kappaletta
Vampires in the Lemon Grove (2013) 1,515 kappaletta
Orange World and Other Stories (2019) 411 kappaletta
Sleep Donation (2014) 351 kappaletta
Stag (2022) 29 kappaletta
Marrowstone (1978) 9 kappaletta
The Bog Girl 8 kappaletta
The Prospectors 6 kappaletta
The Bad Graft 4 kappaletta

Associated Works

The Best American Short Stories 2007 (2007) — Avustaja — 831 kappaletta
The Best American Short Stories 2008 (2008) — Avustaja — 574 kappaletta
The Best American Short Stories 2010 (2010) — Avustaja — 411 kappaletta
The Best American Short Stories 2014 (2014) — Avustaja — 275 kappaletta
The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2015 (2015) — Avustaja — 269 kappaletta
The Best American Short Stories 2016 (2016) — Avustaja — 265 kappaletta
The Best of Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet (2007) — Avustaja — 224 kappaletta
The Changeling (1978) — Esipuhe, eräät painokset215 kappaletta
Granta 97: Best of Young American Novelists 2 (2007) — Avustaja — 196 kappaletta
The Best American Short Stories 2019 (2019) — Avustaja — 182 kappaletta
20 Under 40: Stories from The New Yorker (2010) — Avustaja — 169 kappaletta
The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2013 (2013) — Avustaja — 153 kappaletta
Vampires: The Recent Undead (2011) — Avustaja — 136 kappaletta
Granta 93: God's Own Countries (2006) — Avustaja — 135 kappaletta
The Decameron Project: 29 New Stories from the Pandemic (2020) — Avustaja — 112 kappaletta
The Best American Short Stories 2022 (2022) — Avustaja — 94 kappaletta
The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2022 (2022) — Avustaja — 80 kappaletta
The Uncanny Reader: Stories from the Shadows (2015) — Avustaja — 70 kappaletta
The Penguin Book of the Modern American Short Story (2021) — Avustaja — 56 kappaletta
The Writer's Notebook II: Craft Essays from Tin House (2012) — Avustaja — 38 kappaletta
The Best American Magazine Writing 2012 (2012) — Avustaja — 34 kappaletta
Conjunctions: 52, Betwixt the Between (2009) — Avustaja — 19 kappaletta
Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet No. 15 (2005) — Avustaja — 6 kappaletta

Merkitty avainsanalla

Yleistieto

Syntymäaika
1981-07-10
Sukupuoli
female
Kansalaisuus
USA
Maa (karttaa varten)
USA
Syntymäpaikka
Miami, Florida

Jäseniä

Keskustelut

General Discussion Thread *Group Read* of SWAMPLANDIA, 2013 Category Challenge (helmikuu 2013)

Kirja-arvosteluja

The people who love this book really love it, but I’d been a little hesitant on it because it just didn’t seem like it was going to be for me. It was picked for my book club, which meant I got to confirm yet again that I’ve developed a pretty good sense of what I’m going to enjoy. The writing was vivid, but I just don’t get anything out of the Southern Gothic style and I felt like the plot didn’t really go anywhere.
 
Merkitty asiattomaksi
ghneumann | 238 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Jun 14, 2024 |
(I believe the only things resembling spoilers I have put in this review are also in all the explanatory blurbs, and so are presumably not really spoilers. I will also say, as a warning, I suppose . . . I had some emotional upheaval that was not the book's fault due to reading it, and I found it impossible to distance myself from that when writing this review, which certainly makes it rather less subjective as a result.)

In thinking about this book, what to say about it, how to describe it, one of the only things that sticks in my mind is pretty much the only thing that made me finish reading it: my mother pressed it upon me, having not read it herself but heard about it and investigated it.

So I supposed I rather felt like I had to finish it, coupled with the fact that I could not simply abandon Ava and Kiwi and Osceola without finding out where Karen Russell left them.

In a way that made the entry into the story a little harder and a little easier for me - this was a book my mother wanted me to read and had spoken to me about before she became ill and later passed away. Following Ava's feelings on her own mother's time in the hospital and later death were a poignantly strange entry to her mindset that perhaps made it harder for me to countenance her later choices, after sinking into her so well early on.

There were moments in this book that were intriguing, and certainly the premise of the family that live at and run Swamplandia! is in itself intriguing - particularly for someone like me, perhaps. (I have worked at a zoo and a wildlife park; the idea of it being your family's home, life, legacy is fascinating.)

There were far more moments in this book that, all credit to Russell as an author, made me genuinely gut-wrenchingly disgusted or ill. I am not entirely sure if they were supposed to, some of them, but I definitely had those feelings. (One of the reasons I really wanted to put this book down.)

Reading this book, and the 'adventures' of the teenagers in it, left me feeling like I was halfway between a young adult, or juvenile, book - adventures that should end poorly, but never quite go as badly as they could - and an adult book - adventures that can end as badly as it is possible to go.

It felt almost as though Russell didn't know which the story was - which feeling also came into play, for me, in several other of the sub-plots throughout the novel.

I will probably never pick this book up again, and at this point . . . despite Russell's few moments that touched me in the story, I'm not even sure I'm glad I picked it up to begin with.

This is not an uplifting book - that in itself doesn't bother me. Some of the most incredible books I've ever read are horrendously depressing.

Something about this story, however . . . I can't put my finger on it, but it is not a feeling that leaves me in a good place, mentally.

The novel was interesting, at the least, and the writing was not poor - the indecision I sensed is almost certainly a stylistic issue, and might not bother some readers - but it wasn't my cup of tea.
… (lisätietoja)
½
 
Merkitty asiattomaksi
Kalira | 238 muuta kirja-arvostelua | May 15, 2024 |
This book was thoroughly imaginative with fully realized characters and beautiful prose. That said, if there were a way to pluck a story out of my mind to make it as though I had never read it, I'd probably choose this story.

I think part of the problem is the way this was marketed, as though it were a quirky , fun story with a cutesy cover and a side show title. The next thing you know you are reading about a child being raped, a family losing their home and identity aproud old man wasting away in a nursing home- an adolescent boy losing his virginity in a meaningless way a teenage girl being medicated into zombiehood-the lsit goes on. I know that not all books have to have a happy ending and I do not dispute this writer's talent, if she weren't so talaented, I'd not feel so bad.… (lisätietoja)
 
Merkitty asiattomaksi
cspiwak | 238 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Mar 6, 2024 |
This is an odd book. It has an air of unreality, yet I can't call it magical realism, and in the end it collapses into prosaic convention. It is humorous, yet harshly treats two-thirds of its main characters, and can you call a book that includes the rape of a child humorous? I think not. Then there's the setting in the swamps of Florida, inherently an odd and unusual place.

The story is about the Bigtree family of tourist attraction Swamplandia! fame, where they run an alligator-wrestling themed park on their own little island in the swamp. The adults are quickly removed from the scene: the mother dies shortly before the novel opens, and the father soon moves to the mainland to "raise money".

The book is then split in half. One half follows older brother Kiwi, 16, who moves to the mainland and takes a low paying grunt job with competing theme park World of Darkness. Kiwi is treated much better than any other character. He is endearingly painted as a type of sheltered, naive home-schooled kid too smart for his own good. Picked on and called gay by a bully, he thinks to recite poetry to him on the idea that its inherent beauty will be recognized and appreciated. Ha ha. He says something is "ominous", but only having seen the word in books, pronounces it like "dominoes".

Despite his serious lack of preparedness for dealing with mainland life and other people, he finds friends who look out for him, a beautiful girl to relieve him of his virginity, and the great luck to be recruited as a trainee pilot for the park, a skill he seems to learn with ease. Kiwi's chapters are generally funny, and he does well.

His younger sisters are a completely different story. Left behind on the island by Kiwi and their father, Osceola (14 or 15) is either dangerously mentally ill or a spirit medium capable of interacting with ghosts, whom she "dates". She runs off on an abandoned dredge barge to marry one of these ghosts, an adventure which will not end well.

That leaves Ava, 12 or 13, who takes over the other half of the narrative. At the same time her sister leaves her all by herself on the island, a strange older man appears. He convinces Ava that her sister likely is indeed in communication with the dead and on the way to the Underworld, and only he can help guide Ava to the Underworld in pursuit of her sister to rescue her. Ava, smart but all too credulous, goes off through the swamps with this man, and the outcome is that of a dark after-school special. Or it would be if there were any exploration of the aftermath, which there is not - Ava escapes, is eventually rescued and reunited with her family, and there it ends. This pisses off a lot of readers, apparently, which I can understand.

So Karen Russell puts these two girls through hell, not literally as it turns out but certainly figuratively. We have the alternating chapters of their brother as the amusing counterweight, I suppose, yet their suffering cannot be said to be redeemed in any way.

I'm not sure therefore that I would recommend this book to many people, though I did enjoy the reading experience it gave me and was always interested to pick it up again and resume reading. Russell's writing style is accurately described somewhere I saw as "thick"; it is very descriptive. I had to make note of this once sentence: rather than say something as mundane as "she saw him walking towards her", she writes, "Across the room, the Bird Man's antique boots were coming toward me, the toes addressing the air like sniffing noses, and slowly I gathered up the long length of him: trousered legs, brace of feathers, face, hat."
… (lisätietoja)
 
Merkitty asiattomaksi
lelandleslie | 238 muuta kirja-arvostelua | Feb 24, 2024 |

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Tilastot

Teokset
20
Also by
27
Jäseniä
7,606
Suosituimmuussija
#3,212
Arvio (tähdet)
½ 3.5
Kirja-arvosteluja
412
ISBN:t
81
Kielet
9

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