By Love Possessed by Lorna Goodison

84%

11 Critic Reviews

Goodison's stories represent a refreshingly realistic depiction of Jamaican life. Yet their simplicity of form and pointed truths also call to mind the traditional fable.
-Globe and Mail

Synopsis

“A beautifully written and evocative book.”
—Danielle Evans, author of Before You Suffocate Your Own Fool Self, winner of the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize

“Written by the hand of a poet, the prose in this collection is consistently beautiful.”
—Elizabeth Nunez, author of Prospero’s Daughter and Boundaries

“I love the tender beautiful writing; I love the characters, and in many ways it felt as if I had met them before….I just love this book.”
—Uwem Akpan, author of Say You’re One of Them, an Oprah Book Club selection

Internationally renowned and award-winning poet Lorna Goodison brings us By Love Possessed, her long-anticipated collection of short fiction. Making dazzling use of the Creole patois of Jamaica, Goodison limns the beauty and despair of the human condition and explores the unique power of love to both uplift and destroy. Goodison’s powerfully moving stories explore the pain, the struggle, and the triumph of Jamaicans—particularly women—those still living on their Caribbean island and those who have emigrated elsewhere. By Love Possessed is a rare and beautiful gift from an extraordinary writer who was mentored by the legendary Derek Walcott and who stands with Edwidge Danticat as a brave and breathtaking voice in contemporary literature.

 

About Lorna Goodison

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Celebrated poet Lorna Goodison is the author of the highly acclaimed memoir From Harvey River, which was named a Washington Post Book World Best Book of the Year. She is the recipient of the Musgrave Gold Medal and the Commonwealth Writers Prize, among other accolades. Born in Jamaica, she now teaches at the University of Michigan.
 
Published May 29, 2012 by Amistad. 275 pages
Genres: Other, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for By Love Possessed
All: 11 | Positive: 10 | Negative: 1

Kirkus

Below average
Reviewed by Kirkus Reviews on Jun 01 2012

Goodison knows the emotional space she wants her stories to occupy, but most are too brief and simplistic to generate much feeling.

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Globe and Mail

Excellent
Reviewed by Donna Bailey Nurse on Aug 23 2012

Goodison's stories represent a refreshingly realistic depiction of Jamaican life. Yet their simplicity of form and pointed truths also call to mind the traditional fable.

Read Full Review of By Love Possessed | See more reviews from Globe and Mail

Globe and Mail

Good
Reviewed by Donna Bailey Nurse on Aug 23 2012

Halfway through Lorna Goodison's stunning collection By Love Possessed, I realized I was holding my breath. This was partly because of the uniqueness of the subject matter...and it was partly because of the uniqueness of style...

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Elle

Excellent
Reviewed by Ben Dickinson on May 25 2012

The voices come vividly off the page, unerring in their Carib­bean ­cadence—especially those in thickest patois.

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Harlem World

Excellent
Reviewed by Harlem World on Sep 05 2012

Poetically rendered, these and over a dozen other evocative stories create a world in which pride can nourish a soul or be its ruin and where people are in turn uplifted and undone by love.

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The Caribbean Review of Books (CRB)

Excellent
Reviewed by Ifeona Fulani on Nov 01 2011

Goodison’s gift for verbal economy in crafting characters that live and breathe is beautifully showcased in this collection.

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This Magazine

Excellent
Reviewed by Emily Landau on Mar 23 2011

The collection’s most striking element is Goodison’s use of language

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Quill & Quire

Good
Reviewed by Natalie Samson on May 01 2011

More than just a series of snapshots featuring tender but mundane relationships, Goodison’s masterfully rendered stories offer a real sense of the challenges facing the inhabitants of postcolonial nations both at home and abroad.

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loveaxe

Good
Reviewed by Kelly Baker Josephs on Aug 14 2012

Goodison’s artistry always recalls her home country. Also, her words speak to readers as though they are as familiar with Jamaica as Goodison herself...

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Charmaine Valere

Good
Reviewed by Charmaine Valere on Sep 22 2011

Considering its language and its contemporary and universal themes, the best of what we get in By Love Possessed is a carefully constructed dualism of sorts: it is nationalistic and global, time-and-place-specific, and transcendent.

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Toronto Reads

Good
Reviewed by Eric on Feb 01 2011

...Goodison has the knack of casually bringing us into a new life in each story—perhaps leading with a colloquial remark or a comical turn—and within a couple of pages have us intensely interested in that life.

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Reader Rating for By Love Possessed
82%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 6 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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