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How to Breathe Underwater
by Julie Orringer | Literature & Fiction
Registered by seethroughfaith of Turku, Varsinais-Suomi / Egentliga Finland Finland on 7/23/2008
Average 7 star rating by BookCrossing Members 

status (set by VeganMedusa): travelling


This book is in the wild! This Book is Currently in the Wild!

6 journalers for this copy...

Journal Entry 1 by seethroughfaith from Turku, Varsinais-Suomi / Egentliga Finland Finland on Wednesday, July 23, 2008

This book has not been rated.

I usually buy books secondhand if I can and this one is no exception. I have set a limit of 2€ /£2 when in the UK a book (unless it is something I have really been looking for, or an author that I am mad about!) and have found charity shops and fleamarkets to be a great sources of paperbacks in English - even here in Turku, Finland. I paid £2 for this one inHelp the Aged in Harrogate in the UK last month.

Just noticed that this is a collection of short stories. Not my favourite genre but let's see :)

Synopsis
In her dazzling first book Julie Orringer dives into the private world of childhood and immerses us in its fears and longings: the jealous friendships and the bitter sibling battles; the parents that row and the boys that won't dance with you. Then, in a voice that is equally tender and compassionate, she reminds us of those rare, exhilarating moments of victory.

Unbelievably good: the humiliations and cruelties and passions of childhood, sparkling fresh prose, a writer with a big heart and an acute sense of the small things that loom large in our lives' (Monica Ali, Guardian)

‘Outstanding’(Nick Hornby)





 


Journal Entry 2 by seethroughfaith at Turku, Varsinais-Suomi / Egentliga Finland Finland on Tuesday, June 08, 2010

8 out of 10

I am not a fan of short stories, and if I'd realised this was such a volume I probably wouldn't have bought it. Then I'd have missed out. It's suprisingly good!

I started reading this today (thinking it was a full length novel). I hadn't meant to take this book with me down to the pool at all (was in the middle of Tony Parsons' The Family Way but got hooked.

So far the best short story has been the one which gives the collection its name How to Breathe Underwater which is sad and redemptive too. The story Notes to sixth grade self was also very good.

I started to read this (as I said) at the poolside, and was amused by the description on the backcover "J.O dives into the private world of childhood .

About half way through. Will take this with me to the BC meet up on Saturday where I know it will find a new and good temporary home

 


Journal Entry 3 by seethroughfaith at Turku, Varsinais-Suomi / Egentliga Finland Finland on Tuesday, June 08, 2010

7 out of 10

11th June 2010

I finished this collection today. I find short stories so unsatisfying in many ways. I know they are a literary form, and take special skill to write, but still ...

Orringer's stories are all -in some way - about growing up, and in particular the difficult teenage years, many of them contain characters submerged by loss, whether of parents or other relationships. Some were good, a couple excellent, but 2-3 were, IMHO, less than satisfactory, in part because there was just too much (sex) information.

My favourite in this collection was The Isabel Fish. It really made me think.

I wonder about Orringer's background. Information is scanty but she definitely has an intereste in Judaism / the Jewish way of life, and might even be Jewish herself. In the final story the Jewish girl sits in a RC first communion Easter service and has an epiphany moment when she realises that Jesus had been a Jew and had participated in Seder (passover) meals!

Orringer has, since How to Breathe Underwater, written a novel. I think I might enjoy that more than these short stories, because her style of writign and use of vocabulary are good, it's just the genre which I struggle with! 


Journal Entry 4 by seethroughfaith at Verkahovi in Turku, Varsinais-Suomi / Egentliga Finland Finland on Tuesday, June 08, 2010

This book has not been rated.

Released 7 yrs ago (6/12/2010 UTC) at Verkahovi in Turku, Varsinais-Suomi / Egentliga Finland Finland

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

It's time to let this book go. Hope it finds a new reader at the BC meet up and a new temporary home before being re-released again.

 


Journal Entry 5 by wingpippiswing at Turku, Varsinais-Suomi / Egentliga Finland Finland on Saturday, June 12, 2010

This book has not been rated.

A catch from a home meetup :) Hope I won't spill any coffee on it... 


Journal Entry 6 by wingpippiswing at Turku, Varsinais-Suomi / Egentliga Finland Finland on Saturday, August 20, 2011

This book has not been rated.

This was not a feel-good book, but rather a makes-you-think book. It's filled with sadness or dark hues at least and it might have been better read when feeling happy and relaxed instead of a bit tired and exhausted. Still, the way Orringer writes is pretty captivating and I'm convinced her name will be on everyone's lips one day. 


Journal Entry 7 by wingpippiswing at RABCK, A Bookcrossing member -- Controlled Releases on Saturday, August 20, 2011

This book has not been rated.

Released 6 yrs ago (8/22/2011 UTC) at RABCK, A Bookcrossing member -- Controlled Releases

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

I found the book to be on a Finnish crosser's wishlist, so I'm passing it forward... 


Journal Entry 8 by wingNiksuwing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Tuesday, September 06, 2011

This book has not been rated.

It was me the courier who read the book while waiting to be forwarded to right person. It took me first two “chapters” to realise these were short stories! After that I was able to fully enjoy my read. Well worth reading. 


Journal Entry 9 by wingNiksuwing at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Tuesday, September 13, 2011

This book has not been rated.

Released 5 yrs ago (9/13/2011 UTC) at Helsinki, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

To annimanni today.

Read and Release at BookCrossing.com...
 


Journal Entry 10 by wingAnnimanniwing at Espoo, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Tuesday, September 13, 2011

This book has not been rated.

Awww, what a nice surprise! Thanks pippis! And a thank you to Niksu too for couriering :) 


Journal Entry 11 by wingAnnimanniwing at Espoo, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Tuesday, June 26, 2012

This book has not been rated.

This was a beautiful, haunting and - at times - disturbing read. I really enjoyed Orringer's style and language.

I didn't use to be that big on short stories, either, but have read several very good collections (thanks to bookcrossing!) these past few years and am really getting to like them more and more (I read on the bus to and from work and for that, short stories work very well). Unlike seethroughfaith, I didn't find these stories wanting - I thought Orringer succeeded well in creating a solid world and authentic characters in each story.

I tried to think about my favourites among the stories and finally picked Note to Sixth-Grade Self and Care. Don't know why.

***

This book will next travel to frutz in Luxembourg as part of a wishlist trade. Enjoy! 


Journal Entry 12 by wingfrutzwing at Mersch, Kanton Mersch Luxembourg on Thursday, July 19, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Thank you Annimanni for sending this to me. I've had this on my wishlist since I read Nick Hornby's appraisal of it in "the complete poysyllabic spree", look forward to reading it. 


Journal Entry 13 by wingfrutzwing at posted to another bookcrosser, -- By post or by hand/ in person -- New Zealand on Monday, December 17, 2012

This book has not been rated.

Released 4 yrs ago (12/17/2012 UTC) at posted to another bookcrosser, -- By post or by hand/ in person -- New Zealand

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Happy reading!  


Journal Entry 14 by VeganMedusa at Invercargill, Southland New Zealand on Friday, January 04, 2013

This book has not been rated.

Thank you so much for this RABCK, frutz! This looks really good, so I'll read it soon. 


Journal Entry 15 by VeganMedusa at Invercargill, Southland New Zealand on Friday, March 01, 2013

This book has not been rated.

Ha, I didn't read the other journal entries till now and I see I'm not the first person to read this at the pool! Not by plan, I was hurriedly scouring the shelves for something that suited my mood and grabbed this. It wasn't until I was at the pool that I realised the title and my son thought it was very appropriate reading while he had his swimming lessons. :-)

I'm not a fan of short stories, but wow, this blew me away. Warning - that first story is shocking. I'll definitely look out for this author in future. She really has a way of portraying childhood/teens that rings so true for me. 


Journal Entry 16 by VeganMedusa at YHA Arthur’s Pass Mountain House in Arthur's Pass, Canterbury New Zealand on Monday, January 13, 2014

This book has not been rated.

Released 3 yrs ago (1/15/2014 UTC) at YHA Arthur’s Pass Mountain House in Arthur's Pass, Canterbury New Zealand

WILD RELEASE NOTES:


If you have found this book please know that it is a travelling book. It is not lost. You see, we at bookcrossing, love our books so much that we like to share it with the world. Read it if you think it's interesting enough and/or pass it on to someone who might enjoy it as well. 


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