Shout Her Lovely Name (Paperback)
July 2012 Indie Next List
“From the first page, this extraordinary collection of short stories grabbed me by the throat and would not let go. Each one is filled with poignant, thought-provoking observations on the tenuous, yet unbreakable, bond between mothers and daughter. Serber has given readers a remarkable, heartfelt book to be savored, shared, and passed on from one generation to another.”
— Anderson McKean, Page & Palette, Fairhope, AL
A New York Times Notable Book
"Nuanced and smart . . . Serber knows that neglect or disconnect doesn't always turn into trauma or damage. Life isn't algebra. Which events lead to pain, and which to growth and awareness, remains unpredictable. The one reliable truth is that mistakes illuminate the most, albeit with fractured light."
--The New York Times Book Review
Mothers and daughters ride a familial tide of joy, pride, regret, guilt, and love in these acclaimed stories of flawed, resilient women. Wheat bread and plain yogurt become weapons in a battle between a teenage daughter and her mother. An aimless college student, married to her much older professor, sneaks cigarettes while caring for their newborn son. On the eve of her husband's fiftieth birthday, a pilfered fifth of rum, rogue teenagers, and an unexpected tattoo has a woman questioning her place in her children's lives. And we follow through two decades the family created when capricious, magnetic Ruby, an ambitious college student, becomes a single mother to cautious daughter Nora in 1970s California. Shout Her Lovely Name is a "funny, bittersweet" (Vanity Fair) book that announces the arrival of a stunning new writer.
"Powerful and disquieting . . . Serber writes with exquisite patience and sensitivity, and is an expert in the many ways that love throws people together and splits them apart, often at the same time."
--The Wall Street Journal
"Always, Serber's writing sparkles: practical, strong, brazenly modern, marbled with superb descriptions . . . Take my word: Shout Her Lovely Name will reach inside readers and squeeze. On second thought, don't take my word. Read these lovely stories."
--San Francisco Chronicle
"Call it fiction, but this collection is achingly true to life when it comes to the many ways mothers and daughters grow together and apart, over and over again."--O, the Oprah Magazine "The characters are irresistible . . . Serber writes with exquisite patience and sensitivity, and is an expert in the many ways that love throws people together and splits them apart, often at the same time." --Wall Street Journal "Elegant...A terrific introduction to Serber’s gifts, and hopefully a preview of good things to come." --Kirkus Reviews "Serber’s stellar first collection packs an emotional wallop right from the start...sharp, somber, and sparkling commentary... As provocative as it is poignant, Serber’s searingly honest depiction of the complex, contentious, and confusing bonds at the heart of all families heralds an exceptional new talent." --Booklist (starred) "An impressive debut, with insightful, sometimes painful truths about the complicated relationships between mothers and daughters." --Library Journal "As its title implies, Natalie Serber’s collection Shout Her Lovely Name is a triumphant battle cry of hard-won victory over the stalemate and injuries between mothers and daughters. She leaves the reader amazed at the tenacity, tenderness, and truth of her characters." – Siobhan Fallon, author of You Know When the Men are Gone "These are wise and graceful stories that stay true to their hopeful, fallible characters. Shout Her Lovely Name is beautifully crafted and a real pleasure to read." –Jean Thompson, author of The Year We Left Home "Coming of age is a painful and beautiful experience in Natalie Serber's hands. These are funny and poignant pieces, building a book that feels novelistic in sweep, yet true to the precision and direct aim of the short story. A real pleasure."--Antonya Nelson " In the complexities of family triumphs and catastrophes, Natalie Serber is always achingly specific. Between mothers and daughters, women and their lovers, she misses nothing, and in all her scenes, the reader feels the true breath of life." --Charles Baxter "In the tradition of Lorrie Moore and Tobias Wolff, Natalie Serber's stories uncover the secret hearts of seemingly ordinary people. Funny, heart-felt, and keenly perceptive, this is a book worth shouting about." --Dan Chaon, author of Await Your Reply and Stay Awake "Shout Her Lovely Name joins the ranks of the finest books ever to address relations between daughters and their mothers – equal parts love and sandpaper. I ached for these characters and cried at their hard-earned moments of joy. A book to make you marvel that someone really does understand, to make you grateful that she wrote it all down so fiercely, so tenderly." --Robin Black, author of If I Loved You, I Would Tell You