I don’t know why Curtis Sittenfield dropped off of my radar, because when Prep came out I read it in one sitting, and then passed it around the office because it was so brilliant. And waited with baited breath for American Wife, which I enjoyed immensely too. So now I’m really, really excited to discover her other novels that have been published between them and this wonderful collection of short stories entitled You Think It, I’ll Say It.
You Think It, I’ll Say It is a collection of 10 stories depicting human nature in all its (dirty) glory. Curtis Sittenfield has a fantastic ability to craft characters in such a way that they appear in front of you, lifelike and real. We jump into their lives for a few minutes, a few days, and drop out again, but their stories remain with us. I love how each story contains seemingly mundane, everyday life, plots, but the mere interaction between characters, or the thought process of the main character makes them so original. Relatable and original. Depressing but also uplifting. In the end this is life: a collection of mundane but original situations that we make the most or the worst out of before we move along to the next one.
While I enjoyed all 10 of the stories, finding a piece of myself in most of the characters, I especially loved The Prairie Wife, Bad Latch, and Off The Record. Be prepared to smile, cringe, laugh out loud, shed a tear, and cringe a little more when you read the stories, as there is no way you won’t relate to something or someone in every one of them. Gender roles, coming of age, politics, becoming a mother, the most recent election: all of these topics are laid open in these short stories, in such a brilliant way.
You Think It, I’ll Say It will be published by Random House on April 24th. Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for the advance copy!