Bloomington High School North Library

Bloomington High School North

Today is not your day : stories

Review by Isaiah Farmer on May 20, 2016

Categories: Realistic Fiction

This novel is a compilation of short stories all centered on a common theme; a series of unfortunate events. Each story has one main character and something awful consistently happens to the main character. The stories are so appealing because of the sense of reality that Thurm is able to incorporate. If you’ve ever had something grim and unfortunate happen to you then these characters hit a central nerve. Set primarily in and around New York City, these 11 pieces show characters negotiating everything from romantic and professional mishaps to illness and death. After her husband dies, a one-time best-selling writer casts a grim eye on her disappointments, like a daughter who wore Crocs to the funeral and never did read her mother’s lone book. A 38-year- old widow gets kicked out of a bereavement support group after she determinedly takes up with its only viable male. A floundering young woman has an affair with a much older man, at least in part because his parents were murdered by Stalin’s brutish military. Each situation has just enough tartness and absurdity to ensure the overall mood is not grim but buoyant. Marian Thurm does an incredible job at capturing real people in her characters. Each person is like someone you’ve met somewhere, they’re all someone familiar. She so acutely grasps the idea of relatable tragedy by producing stories that are tragically comical and simple enough to relate to. This is a great book, worth the short read.