Skip to content
Paperback Babylon and Other Stories Book

ISBN: 1400031397

ISBN13: 9781400031399

Babylon and Other Stories

Select Format

Select Condition ThriftBooks Help Icon


Format: Paperback

Condition: Like New

Save $9.46!
List Price $15.95

1 Available

Book Overview

In their various locales--from Montreal (where a prosthetic leg casts a furious spell on its beholders) to New Mexico (where a Soviet-era exchange student redefines home for his hosts)--the characters in Babylon are coming to terms with life's epiphanies, for good or ill. They range from the very young who, confronted with their parents' limitations, discover their own resolve, to those facing middle age and its particular indignities, no less determined...

Customer Reviews

2 ratings

Relationships examined close up...

Babylon and Other Stories is a collection of short stories. The characters are realizing a universal truth: that life is full of change and, unfortunately, suffering. Sometimes this is delivered quietly, such as a medical check up and other times it is abrupt--the end of a relationship. Some of the issues that are raised are commitment, abuse and identity. However, there is also hope, love and humor in these stories. This collection explores different relationships: parent to child, siblings, spouse, friends, etc. Like the city of Babel with its different languages, each character has a distinct voice and a story to share. The characters are engaging and each story has great pacing. We meet Natalie and her husband Nick. They are trying to be supportive of Nick's mother's fourth wedding. There's Kyle who is getting ready to play tennis with his father's old nemesis. And Aggie who is trying to come to terms with her dad's decision to leave his family so that he can be with his girlfriend. One of my favorite stories was "Transcription." Carl came to live with his Uncle Walter after Carl's mom died. Now Carl is older and the roles have been reversed. Walter didn't like the retirement home and Carl has brought Walter to live with him. Carl works from home as a medical transcriber and he is used to being detached when typing medical reports. He struggles to balance emotions and objectivity as he decides on the type of care that Walter needs and wants. Ohlin teaches at Lafayette College and she is a true wordsmith, I found myself repeating phrases. Some examples: "Her mother was in her element in the shopping mall; she responded to the filtered light and Muzak like some kind of specialized plant." (p.54) and "Henry's hearing disappeared slowly, over a year, each day turning fainter and blurrier, like a repeated photocopy." (p.109). Armchair Interviews says: Reading Ohlin's collection of short stories is like eating potato chips. It's hard to stop at just one!

well written relationship tales

This seventeen short story collection are well written relationship tales in which a character either purposely or more likely inadvertently alienates someone close to them with behavior that seems irrational to the latter. Alas, nobody communicates in Babylon, Long Island or the other suburban/rural settings so dysfunction becomes the norm for all. In some ways this anthology is a series of shorts similar to the reflection of life in Alix Ohlin's novel THE MISSING PERSON. Not easy to read, these are complex haunting tales starring in most cases depressing characters who remind this reviewer of the Marmalade song Reflections of My Life as they seen not to want to live, but also not want to die. Harriet Klausner
Copyright © 2023 Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Do Not Sell My Personal Information | Cookie Preferences | Accessibility Statement
ThriftBooks® and the ThriftBooks® logo are registered trademarks of Thrift Books Global, LLC
GoDaddy Verified and Secured