April 14, 2016

Vinegar Girl

Pulitzer Prize winner and American master Anne Tyler brings us an inspired, witty and irresistible contemporary take on one of Shakespeare’s most beloved comedies

Kate Battista feels stuck. How did she end up running house and home for her eccentric scientist father and uppity, pretty younger sister Bunny? Plus, she’s always in trouble at work – her pre-school charges adore her, but their parents don’t always appreciate her unusual opinions and forthright manner.

Dr. Battista has other problems. After years out in the academic wilderness, he is on the verge of a breakthrough. His research could help millions. There’s only one problem: his brilliant young lab assistant, Pyotr, is about to be deported. And without Pyotr, all would be lost.

When Dr. Battista cooks up an outrageous plan that will enable Pyotr to stay in the country, he’s relying – as usual – on Kate to help him. Kate is furious: this time he’s really asking too much. But will she be able to resist the two men’s touchingly ludicrous campaign to bring her around?

Check out the official Reader’s Group Guide for Vinegar Girl here

 

Reviews

“Shakespeare… would be pleased, I am sure… Novels such as Anne Tyler’s, which are so precise and current, are like photographs or digital clock faces that tell us where we are and where we are coming from at the same time. ‘Vinegar Girl’ is an earthy reflection of this fleeting moment, both lively and thoughtful.”Jane Smiley, New York Times Book Review

“[A] screwball comedy of manners that actually channels Jane Austen more than Shakespeare. It’s clear that [Tyler] had fun with Vinegar Girl, and readers will too…A fizzy cocktail of a romantic comedy, far more sweet than acidic, about finding a mate who appreciates you for your idiosyncratic, principled self — no taming necessary.” —NPR.org 

“[An] ingenious resetting… with considerably more humor and gentleness than in the Bard’s version.”Washington Post

“An effective retelling, while nodding to the original text, stands on its own as a story in the way Iris Murdoch’s ‘The Black Prince’ responds to ‘Hamlet’ and Aldous Huxley’s ‘Brave New World’ plays with ‘The Tempest.’ Tyler succeeds in creating a world we believe in…Charming…Clever.” Boston Globe

“Vinegar Girl” is a fast, easy read…Held side-by-side against Shakespeare’s Shrew, the story of Kate and Pyotr is full of hidden treasures.”Houston Chronicle

“Is there any living American writer who has written as well about marriage as Anne Tyler? Or who has consistently been as honest about the disconnect between fantasies of lovebirds living happily ever after and the often sad but also funny miracle of two separate people actually staying together? In Vinegar Girl Tyler brings these talents to the altar of the Hogarth Shakespeare series…it’s fun, lighthearted, clever, compassionate and filled with Tyler’s always extraordinary love for her characters, liberating them here to love each other.” Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel

“[A] great success; Vinegar Girl is funny and endearing, the quirky characters vintage Tyler.” —Minneapolis Star Tribune 

“Tyler’s smooth prose makes Vinegar Girl, one of a series of renowned authors’ Shakespearean updates, a light, summer read.” Baltimore Magazine

About the Author

TylerANNE TYLER is the author of twenty bestselling novels. She was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in 1941 and grew up in Raleigh, North Carolina. She graduated at nineteen from Duke University and went on to do graduate work in Russian studies at Columbia University. A Spool of Blue Thread, Anne Tyler’s New York Times bestselling twentieth novel, was short-listed for the Man Booker Prize; her eleventh novel, Breathing Lessons, was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1988. She is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. She lives in Baltimore, Maryland.

 

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