RaveBookforumThe nice thing about A Grace Paley Reader, aside from the reminder that now would be a good time to read Grace Paley, is that by bringing together a selection of her stories, nonfiction pieces, and poems, it illuminates the connections among them, along with the intertwinings of work and life ... It is remarkable that a voice so acrobatic and sly and playful still rings so true ... If today's newspapers seem not always up to the task of comforting the afflicted and afflicting the comfortable, this book did the trick—that is to say, I found it both comforting and afflicting. And the longer I've had it with me, the more I find myself identifying with a title that at first had seemed awfully studious. A Grace Paley reader: I'm glad to be one.
Arlie Russell Hochschild
MixedBookforumHochschild has gone about her investigation diligently and with an appealing humility ... one of the merits of her book is to give a more thoughtful, nuanced view of [Trump's] constituency than do newspaper snapshots of aggrieved white nationalists ... The irony in all this strenuous empathizing is that 'my Louisiana friends,' as Hochschild calls her subjects, are weary of empathy itself. They’ve had enough of liberals’ high-minded concerns ... Unfortunately, the second half of the book is encumbered by a clunky thesis, a result she’s extracted from her research and serves up in the form of a 'deep story' of the American Right, one that 'tells us how things feel' to the people she’s met.