Thirteen Ways of Looking
Random House, Inc.
In such acclaimed novels as Let the Great World Spin and TransAtlantic,National Book Award–winning author Colum McCann has transfixed readers with his precision, tenderness, and authority. Now, in his first collection of short fiction in more than a decade, McCann charts the territory of chance, and the profound and intimate consequences of even our smallest moments.
“As it was, it was like being set down in the best of poems, carried into a cold landscape, blindfolded, turned around, unblindfolded, forced, then, to invent new ways of seeing.”
In the exuberant title novella, a retired judge reflects on his life’s work, unaware as he goes about his daily routines that this particular morning will be his last. In “Sh’khol,” a mother spending Christmas alone with her son confronts the unthinkable when he disappears while swimming off the coast near their home in Ireland. In “Treaty,” an elderly nun catches a snippet of a news report in which it is revealed that the man who once kidnapped and brutalized her is alive, masquerading as an agent of peace. And in “What Time Is It Now, Where You Are?” a writer constructs a story about a Marine in Afghanistan calling home on New Year’s Eve.
Deeply personal, subtly subversive, at times harrowing, and indeed funny, yet also full of comfort,Thirteen Ways of Looking is a striking achievement. With unsurpassed empathy for his characters and their inner lives, Colum McCann forges from their stories a profound tribute to our search for meaning and grace. The collection is a rumination on the power of storytelling in a world where language and memory can sometimes falter, but in the end do not fail us, and a contemplation of the healing power of literature.
Praise for Colum McCann
Let the Great World Spin
Winner of the National Book Award
“One of the most electric, profound novels I have read in years.”—Jonathan Mahler, The New York Times Book Review
“Stunning . . . [an] elegiac glimpse of hope.”—USA Today
“There’s so much passion and humor and pure life force on every page that you’ll find yourself giddy, dizzy, overwhelmed.”—Dave Eggers
Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award
“Reminiscent of the finest work of Michael Ondaatje and Michael Cunningham.”—O: The Oprah Magazine
“Here is the uncanny thing McCann finds again and again about the miraculous: that it is inseparable from the everyday.”—The Boston Globe
“Another sweeping, beautifully constructed tapestry of life . . . Reading McCann is a rare joy.”—The Seattle Times
Baker & Taylor
A new story collection by the best-selling author of Let the Great World Spin includes the title novella, in which an octogenarian retired judge's musings on his life are interrupted by police updates about his murder later that afternoon. 40,000 first printing.
A story collection includes the title novella, in which an octogenarian retired judge's musings on his life are interrupted by police updates about his murder later that afternoon.
New York :, Random House,, 
242 pages ; 22 cm