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Blue Shoe

Our Price $ 33.11  
Retail Value $ 38.95  
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Item Number 417096  
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Item Specifications...

Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 5.24" Width: 6.08" Height: 0.81"
Weight:   0.4 lbs.
Binding  CD
Release Date   Sep 30, 2002
Publisher   CD Unabridged
ISBN  1590863542  
EAN  9781590863541  
UPC  755057038956  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
Mattie Ryder is a marvelously funny, well-intentioned, religious, sarcastic, tender, angry, and broke recently divorced mother of two young children. Then she finds a small rubber blue shoe - the kind you might get from a gumball machine - and a few other trifles that were left years ago in her father's car. They seem to hold the secrets to her messy upbringing, and as she and her brother follow these clues to uncover the mystery of their past, she begins to open her heart to her difficult, brittle mother and the father she thought she knew. And with that acceptance comes an opening up to the possibilities of romantic love. In a disarming blend of everyday life and the sublime, of reverence and irreverence, and of humor and grace, Anne Lamott speaks directly to our most closely held concerns, bringing comfort to anyone - all of us - whose family life can feel overwhelming and uncontainable.

Buy Blue Shoe by Laural Merlington Anne Lamott from our Audio Book store - isbn: 9781590863541 & 1590863542 upc: 755057038956

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More About Laural Merlington Anne Lamott

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Anne Lamott is the New York Times bestselling author of Help, Thanks, Wow; Small Victories; Stitches; Some Assembly Required; Grace (Eventually); Plan B; Traveling Mercies; Bird by Bird; Operating Instructions, and the forthcoming Hallelujah Anyway. She is also the author of several novels, including Imperfect Birds and Rosie. A past recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and an inductee to the California Hall of Fame, she lives in Northern California.

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Product Categories
1Books > Audio CDs > Literature & Fiction > General   [1836  similar products]
2Books > Audio CDs > Literature & Fiction > Unabridged   [1707  similar products]
3Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > Authors, A-Z > ( L ) > Lamott, Anne   [8  similar products]
4Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > General > Contemporary   [66754  similar products]

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Anne and Mattie should go to hell  Oct 24, 2008
This book was a miserable waste of time. The main character, whom I imagine the author modeled on herself, as she has with her other work, was a completely self-absorbed hypocrit. I had to finish it for a book club but had to put it down on several occassions because I was so disgusted with the main character. Her children are developing various self injurious behaviors because of her ongoing affair with her remarried ex-husband, but does she care? No. She only stops when she manages to get another man, whom she only likes because he is good-looking into her bed. That is until she seduces her already married friend and breaks up his marriage without a twinge of regret. Oh and meanwhile Mattie puts her mother in a nursing home and forces her into a disassociative state with the trauma of living with her own husband's old lover so Mattie can continue stay in her mother's house rent free and not get a real job. Unbelieveably she also hits her mother up for repairs and improvments to her house right before she puts her away. Of course she is always sure to make it to church, except when she takes to the bed for a week because she is sick with the discovery her long-dead father's infedelities. What is even more amazing is that I belive the author expects us to sympathize with this cretin. She obviously can relate, I, for one, cannot. A study in self-absorption and not for anyone who values characters with some....character.Blue Shoe
surprised by the negative reviews!  Jun 23, 2008
I've not read anything else by Anne Lamott, but I plan to. I bought "Blue Shoe" on a whim and didn't expect it to be a light, easy, fluffy read. To my surprise, I've read it again since. No, the characters aren't perfect, yes, they fail. But they are so very human.

Certainly, sometimes we want to read fiction which will provide us with characters so good, so lacking in imperfection, that we can try to aspire to their perfect heights. And sometimes, conversely, we want to read about real, flawed people, ones who affirm our own lives. Which of us has never - be honest! - wanted the wrong person (or the right one) at the wrong time? has never engaged in emotionally destructive behaviors? has not known the right answer? Ms Lamott tells the story with such kindness and generosity to her characters... I can only hope to aspire to be so loving to myself and to my own friends.
The Truth Shall Set Your Free But First It Will Make You Miserable  Nov 4, 2006
The S.F. Bay area's Anne Lamott is well known through her fiction (Joe Jones, Crooked Little Heart, All New People, etc.) and non-fiction (Bird by Bird, Traveling Mercies, Plan B: Further Thoughts on Faith). Both adored and distrusted for her outspoken faith and her hilarious candor about messy issues like sexual mores, abortion, divorce, Lamott's writings demonstrate that life is a bundle of contradictions for people like her, like me, like all of us who on the way but not there yet. A Guggenheim fellowship recipient, she has been a Mademoiselle book reviewer and a California restaurant critic. She has taught at UC Davis and teaches writing workshops across the U.S.

In Blue Shoe, Lamott allows us to eavesdrop and peek in on the tensions, struggles, and alliances made and broken by three generations of Mattie Ryder's family. She is a forty-something, perfect size 12, divorced mother of two young children, struggling to support her household, and to find her way forward amidst life's discouragements. Her narcissistic liberal activist mother. Isa, looms over the narrative as does the shadow of her dead father, Alfred. Mattie's is very much a stereotypical Marin County family, hedonistic, liberal, educated, free-living. The blue shoe named in the title is a vending machine trinket Mattie treats like a good luck charm. Tracing its origins connects Mattie and her brother Al to family secrets that will wound before they heal.

Despite Mattie's (and Lamott's) transparent Christian faith, there are no plaster saints in this book, but only gritty, real people. Lamott is a disciplined author, and knows it is best to show rather than tell. Like a sea shell left on the shore by a receding wave, the theme of this book emerges from the experience of its characters rather than being placarded and proclaimed. The theme is stated but not trumpeted as such in Chapter Ten, where Mattie tells her brother, "Yesterday I had an epiphany. I realized that all I have to do is to tell the truth, and let go of the results" (223). Her theme could be expressed in this wry version of a familiar New Testament text: "The truth will set you free, but first it will make you miserable."

This is my first Lamott novel, so I can't compare it to others she has written. She succeeds here in opening her theme to us like leaves of an avocado, inviting us to savor the subtle flavors and fragrances arising from her narrative. The pace is slow-moving, and this too is a credit to Lamott's artistry, because real life is not a quickly dispatched explanation, but a slow process of experience and discovery sorted out from the tangle of the mundane.

Despite her slow pace, too slow for some, I give Blue Shoe five stars because I believe this slowness is appropriate to a portrayal of life as it is, where the fragments of lessons learned assemble slowly before taking discernible shape.

I recommend Blue Shoe to anyone prepared to see life and relationships in full color rather than in black and white. Lamott calls us to openness to new information, and to willingness to seek out and face unexpected or uncomfortable truths. The rich web of relationships clustered around Mattie Ryder is transformed as a result. If our experience would reflect theirs, we will need courage, curiosity, and perhaps a lucky blue shoe of our own.
A bit of reality in the insanity  Jul 18, 2006
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. At times, I found it a bit dark and depressing, but in it I saw a bit of everyone I know embedded in its characters. As always, Ms Lamott's writing is hypnotic and poetic in a funny and sometimes melancholy way.
Not a Total Waste of Time  Jun 8, 2006
This was my first Anne Lamott read. What people say about starting with the first books and working your way up to the most recent, is often true. Anne Lamott is obviously a very talented writer, with a wonderful dry sense of humar and excellent descriptions of setting. However, something tells me that her earlier books are even better.
To begin, what I loved about this book was the dry humor (ie: feeling like pouring Draino over the pet iguana, etc) and the lovely descriptions. I also enjoyed the themes of self-discovery, and picking up the pieces along the way in life. Anne Lamott most definitely does a better job about writing of the trials of middle age, feminism, and discovery than some writers, who fill pages with a soon-to-be Lifetime movie script, but there are some definite flaws within as well.
I wish that more depth could have been given about the characters, or that other perspectives had been given. I wanted to know about the intertwining of lives and characters, not horribly depressing pages about dementia and drawn out-death scenes of the beloved family pet. To actually shape this story, she needed to go into the past, instead of the present.
But what annoyed me the most, was the ending. The whole premise of this story was about Mattie finding herself, discovering her father's secrets and the brother she never knew. But the story ended so abruptly, that you wanted to know more. You had a part of the story, but it seemed as if Lamott just got tired and threw in the towel.
I would have given this book three and a half, or even four stars if not for the ending, but I felt horribly cheated. In a way, the characters did as well. They didn't get to complete the journey either. The ending is everything to make a good piece of literature morph into a great one.
This is a fast read (I read it in two days), and a very good beach book. I will give Anne Lamott the fact that she is very engrosing, and makes you want to keep reading.
But, if you want some true feminist literature with amazing, plots, characters, and endings, read any one of Margaret Atwood's books!
I have not completely given up on Anne Lamott, however. I look forward to actually starting from the beginning, and then seeing what I think!

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