In this stirring new collection, Ronna Wineberg explores our essential bonds to partners, children, parents, and friends. Intimacy, marriage, parenthood, adultery, divorce, and the legacies left by the past unfold in these beautifully written stories. Men and women search for happiness and love, yet face longing, disappointment, and loss. The characters in Nine Facts That Can Change Your Life struggle with unexpected changes in their own lives but discover the power of kindness, the joy of connection, and the ways in which we can be renewed.
Ronna Wineberg is the author of On Bittersweet Place, her first novel, and a debut collection, Second Language, which won the New Rivers Press Many Voices Project Literary Competition, and was the runner-up for the 2006 Reform Judaism Prize for Jewish Fiction. Her stories have appeared in American Way, Colorado Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, South Dakota Review and elsewhere, and been broadcast on National Public Radio. She is the recipient of a scholarship in fiction to the Bread Loaf Writers Conference and residencies to the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and the Ragdale Foundation. She has been awarded a fellowship in fiction from the New York Foundation for the Arts. She is the founding fiction editor of the Bellevue Literary Review, and lives in New York. www.ronnawineberg.com
Nine Facts That Can Change your Life is a richly imagined, deeply felt and unusually fully realized collection. In story after story Ronna Wineberg shows her characters making surprising swerves and connections, reaching from the past into the present. I marvel at how much she can accomplish in a relatively small number of pages, and at how these stories stay with me. Wineberg is a writer of lovely generosity.
– Margot Livesey, author of The Flight of Gemma Hardy
Ronna Wineberg has written lovely stories, threaded through with the themes of American Jewishness:
self hate, self-love, apartness, the urgent need to belong. As well as a wisdom and compassion
that come only from deep experience–of writing and of life.”
– John Benditt, author of The Boatmaker, winner of the Goldberg Prize, the National Jewish Book Award for debut fiction
As Ronna Wineberg notes in Nine Facts That Can Change Your Life, “The human eye is always more than enough.” Her own perceptive eye lands on people in the Midwest, Manhattan, Poland, and German, as they maneuver their way through love and loss. There stores are beautifully written and emotionally complex, portraying our vital ties to spouses, children, parents, and our own pasts. Winberg is an author with heart, whose tenderness toward her characters and the fragile loveliness of life shine through on every pages.
– Donna Baier Stein, author of Sympathetic People and publisher of Tiferet
Eric Hoffer Awards Honorable Mention for Ronna Wineberg’s Nine Facts That Can Change Your Life
“How could someone go forward in life without touching the hand of the past?” a relocation expert blindsided by her husband’s abandonment asks. The deeply felt stories in this collection explore the ever-present shadow of history in a complex world of relationships among friends, lovers, and families. At turning points such as the collapse of a marriage or the departure of a child to college, the protagonists—most often urban, middle-aged Jewish women—struggle to overcome the gaps of generation, religion, tradition, ethnicity, and gender that separate people as they cope with failures of love and the loss of loved ones. Fulfilling the debts owed between parents and children and finding meaning in the past and the present are unifying themes of these rich and memorable stories.
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