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Paperback Family : American Writers Remember Their Own Book

ISBN: 067977274X

ISBN13: 9780679772743

Family : American Writers Remember Their Own

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Book Overview

Meet the eccentric, eclectic family members of seventeen of America's finest writers in this dazzling, deeply moving collection of memories. Take advice from Alice Hoffman's wise grandmother, Lillie Lulkin. Keep watch over lone children with Brent Staples. Share with Bob Shacochis and his wife the heartbreaking sadness of two people longing to have a child. You can also listen in as Chang-rae Lee and his mother speak their own language; carefully...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

my thoughts about "family"

I feel that the most important thing in any person's life should always be their family, I know mine always has and always will. There is nothing that I hold closer to my heart. This book, "Family: American Writers Remember Their Own," is for anyone who feels as I do that every relative, alive or passed, lives on forever, through memories, stories, pictures, and other belongings they left behind. Most people can recall family gatherings during which their relatives spend hours on end telling stories of a favorite deceased uncle, cousin, parent, and so on. Even if it is the same stories each gathering, they never get old or boring. They seem to be even more interesting or funny each and every time. The memory is an amazingly wonderful and powerful thing. It has the ability to bring passed on friends and family members back to life, to revive them. Such stories as are told in this remarkable book are our way to keep relatives and friends alive forever, to keep their teachings, stories, and beliefs as vivid and extraordinary as when first told or taught. I cannot explain the extent to which I enjoyed and even cherished this collection of stories. It was assigned to me as part of the curriculum in my freshman English class at Florida State University. As with most books assigned in school, I dreaded it because I thought it would be boring and tedious to read it. However, once I read the first story assigned I was deeply moved and inspired. I truly grew to love the book and looked forward to reading the remaining stories. All of the stories are great. The tales seem to put you right into the story. They make you feel as if you are part of the family that is being talked about, as if it is your grandmother or father. A couple of the stories stand out for me. One of them is "Advice from my Grandmother," by Alice Hoffman. The story is told in a truly unconventional style from the point of view of the author's grandmother. It recounts a series of random advices that the author was given by her cynical, caring grandmother. Most of them are simply hilarious. Yet, they also hold much truth. The grandmother tells Alice such things as, "Keep secrets well. Don't lie, but never tell the whole truth.", Don't kid yourself-nothing lasts forever.", and "All people are created equal-black, white, Chinese, Moroccan, it doesn't matter. Equal. Everyone." My personal favorite is, "Women can do anything men can do and more, but is this any reason to tell men the true story? Let them think what they think." Many of the advices given in this story are ones that I hold as very valid in my own life. I feel that there is something in this story for everyone. Another great story is "My Famous Family," by Marion Wink, which tells the story of a twenty-year old young man who is in search for family relatives who were in one way or another famous. During his research he found that the founder and publisher of the "Rolling Stone" magazine was his co

Review of Family American Writers Remember Their Own

Family American Writers Remember Their Own is a book filled with stories of family members of various authors. These stories take you on a ride through an author's life and the people they have been surrounded by. Some of these stories will make you laugh and some will make you cry. Many of them you will be able to relate to as you remember your own family members and the time you spent with them. One of my favorite stories found in this book is Advice from My Grandmother by Alice Hoffman. This is not really a story, but rather several pieces of advice that a grandmother gives to her granddaughter. The thing I liked most about this story was that the grandmother provided a different way of looking at things causing you to evaluate various things in life. Another story that caught my attention was Happy Blue Crabs written by Jose Raul Bernardo. In this story the author remembers bonding with his grandfather as they are preparing a meal for a party and what he learned from him. This story was special to me because it made me remember the times when I would help my grandmother in the kitchen and how that would be our time to bond. Whether you are old or young Family American Writers Remember Their Own contains something for everyone.

My thoughts on Family!

Before I started to read Family, a collection of short stories authors have written about their families, I wasn't too excited about sitting down to read it. A few of the stories were assigned to be read for a class I am taking, but after reading more and more of the stories I found myself eventually picking out the rest to read on my own. I found it very interesting to see the type of families, or to see the basis for the majority of the author's work. For example, I had previously read Krik Krak! by Edwidge Danticat. When I saw she was the author of one of there stories I was eager to read. After reading her story, it shed a new light onto the events in her other book. There are also many other authors in the book that have great stories to tell. One of my favorites was "Advice From My Grandmother" by Alice Hoffman. Her writing is in a different format that I found made it not only easier, but more interesting to read. As I read Hoffman's story I could remember hearing some of the same things her grandmother told me being told to me. Another story I enjoyed was "Happy Blue Crabs" by Jose Raul Bernardo. His story lets the readers get a little peek into what being a man is in his family. I think this was one of the weirder stories, as far as the family ritual aspect, but every family has their own traditions, and that is what makes then unique. All in all, I think this is a great book to read. It is nice to have a book you can pick up and read a little story and put it back down knowing that you won't be lost the next time you get around to picking it back up. I highly recommend this book to everyone; you never know, maybe there is something inside that reminds you of your own family!

Who Whouldn't Love This Collection?

Family-American Writers Remember Their Own, is a wonderful collection of stories, that contain very descriptive analogs of many cultured families. Throughout these stories you recieve general information, about the cultures and the families and many of the traditions that they take part in throughout their lives. Although, these stories are short and to the point they contain much description that leave one satisified. Family, contains many stories that would attract a readers attention simply because they are stories in which we can relate too. For instance in My Famous Family, im sure at one point or another everyone has had to write some type of synoposes of their family, and have discovered something, about their family that they never knew of. That is excatly what took part in My Famous Family, although many of us, probably dont have many family members who have met Charlie Chapman, im sure we have members in our family who we feel are famous for one reason or another. Another story that many relate to would be that of Sympathy, which tells the story, of the black-sheeped father. He was the member in the family whom everyone, did not understand, and did not have the patience to try and get to know. Another familiar situation that many families face. All of these stories, are ones in which people are able to relate to in one way or another, therefore they capture the interest of the audience. It is a wonderful collection, of many amazing stories that are beautifully told. One of my favorite shorty-stories would definitly have to be one of the more recent ones that I have read which would be Advice from my Mother. I enjoyed this story very much so, due to the fact that it wasn't necessarily a story but more of a detailed description of lifes little lessons. Things that a person should live their life by, advice that the author apparently recieved from her mother which she gave to us. Little trickets of information that are very helpful when trying to succeed in life. I enjoyed all of the stories that I have read throughtout this book, and would recommend it to anyone. It was a very insightful look at many differnet families, and numerous situations that we have all experienced at one point of another.

A Fresh Look at Family

I found Family: American Writers Remember Their Own, edited and compiled by Sharon and Steve Fiffer, to be quite an easy read. The book showcases an eclectic mix of quirky stories from a myriad of different people. The writers in the book range from telling stories of growing up in Cuba, to first generation immigrants in the United States. Each tale is original and insightful, providing the reader with a new understanding of other cultures and family lives that differ from their own. I read several stories from this book, but my favorite one would have to be "Callie" by Jayne Anne Phillips. I enjoyed the rich tones and emotions the writer conveyed in describing the pain of losing a child. Phillips skillfully wove this short anecdote together, connecting the past with the present, by telling the story through the passing on of heirlooms in the family. In my own life, heirlooms are passed down and each one holds an important story within it. Each is a tie that keeps us close with those in our families that have passed. Family: American Writers Remember Their Own offers a worthwhile trip into the recesses of other's minds and bodies through the exploration of the importance of family. I learned a great deal from this book and I think everyone could stand to benefit from reading it.
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