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I should preface that I am an Oates fan, and I enjoy her descriptive style of writing. This book was enjoyable and flew by despite being an incredibly long novel. The despair and the longing in the character of Marilyn Monroe is sad yet captivating. My only issue with the novel is that Monroe comes off as a victim all the time with seemingly no responsibility for her own actions; it’s always someone else’s fault that she made a poor choice. I give it four stars and recommend it, particularly if you like novels where the main character is hopelessly flawed.
I should preface that I am both a Sherman Alexie fan, and I also don’t read a lot of short stories. With that being said, this was both entertaining and thought-provoking. Alexie did a wonderful job with the stories and by offering life lessons in the process. If you like short stories, you’ll enjoy this collection. If you enjoy Sherman Alexie, you will find this to fit his normal style of writing as well, and I give it 5 stars.