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Cardiff, by the Sea

By Joyce Carol Oates
Cardiff, by the Sea by Joyce Carol Oates digital book - Fable

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Publisher Description

Four brand-new novellas by the #1 New York Times-bestselling, National Book Award-winning “grand mistress of ghoulishness” (Publishers Weekly).

An academic in Pennsylvania discovers a terrifying trauma from her past after inheriting a house in Cardiff, Maine from someone she has never heard of. A pubescent girl, overcome with loneliness, befriends a feral cat that becomes her protector from the increasingly aggressive males that surround her. A brilliant but shy college sophomore is distraught to discover that she’s pregnant, and the professor who takes her under his wing may not have innocent intentions. And a woman who marries into a family shattered by tragedy finds herself haunted by her predecessor’s voice, an inexplicably befouled well, and a compulsive attraction to a garage that took two lives.

In these psychologically daring, chillingly suspenseful pieces, the author of We Were the Mulvaneys and Blonde writes about women facing threats past and present, once again cementing her reputation for “great intelligence and dead-on imaginative powers” (Los Angeles Times Book Review).

15 Reviews

“DNF -- Cardif, by the Sea 2/5 probably not what I was supposed to take away from this short story but it made me want to move to a farmhouse in the middle of nowhere, Maine. anyways, maybe this just wasnt the right book to try to get into Joyce Carol Oates with. I didnt finish the book, though I finished the first short story, Cardiff, by the Sea. I really wanted to like it and the premise was interesting enough, but I feel as if it really suffers from being a short story instead of a full length novel. the main character is unbearably annoying (not to mention forgettable--I cannot even remember her name), always going on about how she cant trust anyone, familial or otherwise. I feel like, given time to flesh out a backstory for the reader, this wouldnt have been nearly as annoying as it was--many of the thoughts the main character has suffer this same consequence. it makes it extremely hard to empathise with the character and all of her actions. the motivation of the character, too, feels very confusing and not very well fleshed out. she suddenly finds out that she was left land in a will of her biological grandmother, whom she had never met as she was adopted at the age of two. this is fine and well, except for as soon as she heard this news, she instantly forsook her adopted family and would not stop talking (thinking?) about it. this is probably coming from a place of bias (family is family, after all), but, again, it made it very hard for me to see the character as a likeable person. also, like, girl you were two years old when your biological parents die please stop going on about how you remember seeing them killed you literally do not. you were two years old you don’t remember anything! you’re literally gaslighting yourself into creating memories! the uncle was chill as hell though”
“Always love a good short story collection, and these were exceptional!”

About Joyce Carol Oates

Joyce Carol Oates is the author of over seventy books encompassing novels, poetry, criticism, story collections, plays, and essays. Her novel Them won the National Book Award in Fiction in 1970. Oates has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters for more than three decades and currently holds the Roger S. Berlind Distinguished Professorship at Princeton University. 

Other books by Joyce Carol Oates

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