They Could Live with Themselves will immerse you in the private lives behind the postcard scenes of a New England town. Reminiscent of Amy Bloom and Charles Baxter, Jodi Paloni is an eloquent and deeply humane writer with her ear tuned to the quiet, pivotal moments in her characters’ lives. The unsung and the unseen; the decent and the petty: the characters in these interwoven stories will remind you of people you know, and of yourself, at your most tender.
More about this collection
A longer biographical interview with Jodi Paloni
Fiction Writer’s Review interview with Jodi Paloni – about the stories and themes of this collection.
I’ve read They Could Live With Themselves and I think this quote (from the aforementioned interview) encapsulates very well what the stories are about:
“I think about how in real life we all sort of fumble along, attempt to make sense of the tough stuff. We make mistakes, but we try to do the best we can. The title suggests a positive stance. Yes, we can learn to live with ourselves–our quirks and faults, the messes we’re dealt. We have to. Read in that way, there’s a redemptive quality. I’m a fan of at least the possibility for redemption in fiction.”