Lives of Girls and Women

Lives of Girls and Women

by Alice Munro


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The only novel from Alice Munro-award-winning author of The Love of a Good Woman--is an insightful, honest book, "autobiographical in form but not in fact," that chronicles a young girl's growing up in rural Ontario in the 1940's.

Del Jordan lives out at the end of the Flats Road on her father's fox farm, where her most frequent companions are an eccentric bachelor family friend and her rough younger brother. When she begins spending more time in town, she is surrounded by women-her mother, an agnostic, opinionted woman who sells encyclopedias to local farmers; her mother's boarder, the lusty Fern Dogherty; and her best friend, Naomi, with whom she shares the frustrations and unbridled glee of adolescence.

Through these unwitting mentors and in her own encounters with sex, birth, and death, Del explores the dark and bright sides of womanhood. All along she remains a wise, witty observer and recorder of truths in small-town life. The result is a powerful, moving, and humorous demonstration of Alice Munro's unparalleled awareness of the lives of girls and women.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780375707490
Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date: 02/28/2001
Series: Vintage International Series
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 288
Sales rank: 135,318
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.65(d)

About the Author

Alice Munro grew up in Wingham, Ontario, and attended the University of Western Ontario. She has published thirteen collections of stories as well as a novel, Lives of Girls and Women, and two volumes of Selected Stories. During her distinguished career she has been the recipient of many awards and prizes, including three of Canada’s Governor General’s Literary Awards and two of its Giller Prizes, the Rea Award for the Short Story, the Lannan Literary Award, England’s W. H. Smith Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the Man Booker International Prize. In 2013 she was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. Her stories have appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic Monthly, The Paris Review, Granta, and other publications, and her collections have been translated into thirteen languages. She lives in Clinton, Ontario, near Lake Huron. 


Clinton, Ontario, and Comox, British Columbia

Date of Birth:

July 10, 1931

Place of Birth:

Wingham, Ontario, Canada


University of Western Ontario (no degree)

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Lives of Girls and Women 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
autumnc on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Munro is writing from the perspective of a young woman growing up in a small town, Jubilee (Ontario), the daughter of an atheist mother and a farmer father. It is a great reflection on what it means to be the child of a "black-listed" parent (due to her atheism), while also thinking through it as an adult with adult ideals. It creates a great space for thinking through the consequences of our actions, and how we are not the only ones living in the space we occupy. The discussion on the idea of God is intriguing, as well, especially coming from a child. Could there be a God not contained in the churches, not made manageable by any crosses, God real and really in the world? Could there be God amazing, indifferent, beyond faith?
ilovecookies on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I read this book in high school? or university? and I liked it from the get go!!! A good example of Alice Munro's talents.
rampaginglibrarian on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I stumbled upon this book one of the many times i was wandering somewhat lost, confused, and frustrated in one of the libraries in grad school. Picked it up took it home and read it instead of doing whatever homework i was looking for--wonderful novel. Another story of an outsider growing up and finding her own way (wonder why i can relate to that?)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is written well, and the first few chapters are very good; but it does degenerate into explicit descriptions of adolescent sex. The protagonist's sex life is introduced with an older man groping her and masturbating in front of her. Del (protagonist) accepts this as part of her sexual initiation, and is not scared of the older man's attentions. I do not believe this is realistic. Del then has sex with a young man who is a few years older than she. Her infatuation with him changes her life in a profound way.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Havenite More than 1 year ago
I really looked forward to reading her only full length novel. It started out as I expected--a searching tale of a mother and daughter and how they related and why. BUT!! It, in my opinion, degenerated into a boring sex tale. I soon found that I didn't care one bit for the daughter.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ms.Munro has lived a life of a pure and innocent girl in this book. she sent a message to any girls who are growing up; that htough life is hard to conquer but the price is you get to challenge it and make it your own world.