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by Carol Shields

eBooks of the Month Modern and Classic Literary Fiction

LoveReading View on Unless

A beautifully written book about a mother, Reta, struggling to cope with her eldest daughter’s decision to make herself  homeless, choosing to live on the street and beg for money for charity. We follow Reta’s unravelling emotions through the relationships with the rest of her family and also through the new novel she is writing. This is not all doom and gloom, there are some laugh out loud moments but it is also a look at women and how they fit in to society today. Some interesting topics of discussion in this book so tell your book club to get reading.

Unless Synopsis

The dazzling novel from Carol Shields, author of The Stone Diaries, winner of the Pulitzer prize, and Larry's Party, winner of the Orange prize.


Reta Winters has a loving family, good friends, and growing success as a writer of light fiction. Then her eldest daughter suddenly withdraws from the world, abandoning university to sit on a street corner, wearing a sign that reads only 'goodness'.

As Reta seeks the causes of her daughter's retreat, her enquiry turns into an unflinching, often very funny meditation on society and where we find meaning and hope. Unless is a dazzling and daring novel from the undisputed master of extraordinary fictions about so-called 'ordinary' lives.


Unless Press Reviews

'Breathtaking...a masterpiece.' Geoffrey Wansell, Daily Mail

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9780007137695
Publication date: 03/03/2003
Publisher: Harpercollins Publishers
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9780007137695
Publication date: 3rd March 2003
Author: Carol Shields
Publisher: Harpercollins Publishers
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 336 pages
Genres: eBook Favourites, Literary Fiction,
Categories: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945),

About Carol Shields

Carol Shields was born and grew up in Oak Park, a suburb of Chicago. She was the third child of a sweet-factory manager and a schoolteacher.After Hanover College, Indiana, she won a place on an exchange programme with Exeter University. There she found a more academic atmosphere, in which she thrived, and a Canadian engineering graduate student, whom she subsequently married.Over the next ten years or so she moved around Canada with her husband, had five children, came back to England (Manchester) for three years, and wrote the occasional short story. Age twenty-nine, she wrote seven poems for ...

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