Thirteen Ways of Looking
“What Time Is It, Where Are You?”
“What Time Is It Now, Where Are You?” is from Colum McCann’s recent story collection THIRTEEN WAYS OF LOOKING (Random House, 2016). The collection received a Pushcart Prize and selection in the Best American Short Stories of 2105. McCann is the award-winning author of six novels and three collections of short stories.
His novel TRANSATLANTIC (2013) was an international best-seller and his novel LET THE GREAT WORLD SPIN, published in 2009, won worldwide acclaim, including The 2009 National Book Award in the U.S, the 2010 Best Foreign Novel Award in China, the International Impac Award 2011, and a literary award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He is the co-founder of the non-profit global story exchange organisation, Narrative 4, and he teaches at the MFA program in Hunter College.
Reviews and Praise:
“The irreducible mystery of human experience ties this small collection together, and in each of these stories McCann explores that theme in some strikingly effective ways….McCann has perfected a method of finely blending his own narration with his characters’ thoughts and dialogue.”— Ron Charles, The Washington Post
“McCann is a writer of power and subtlety…The four stories here — one is a long novella of shifting tone and focus; the others are short and more directed — differ widely from one another. But they are connected by a tension, an unease, a threat, a sense that things are off kilter but perhaps can be put right if the characters, and the reader, understand them more fully. The powerful title story loiters in the mind long after you’ve read it…Mr. McCann’s first story lingers, asking you to read it again…[He] shifts gears, as [Wallace] Stevens does so often in his poem, leaving us without resolution but with the haunting image of a gray, motionless sky and a sense of how multiple perspectives can obscure, not illuminate, a fragile truth.” — Sarah Lyall, The New York Times
“McCann is a passionate writer whose impulse is always toward a generous understanding of his diverse characters.”—The Wall Street Journal