Maggie Shipstead

NWPR Books
5:01 am
Sun June 22, 2014

'Astonish Me' Asks, Is It Enough To Only Be Good?

Originally published on Sat August 2, 2014 10:11 am

We're continuing our weekend reads recommendations with author Alexander Chee, whose novel Edinburgh won multiple literary awards. Chee's pick for you this weekend is Astonish Me, by Maggie Shipstead — the tale of a ballerina who leaves the dance world to have a baby. Chee tells NPR's Rachel Martin that he appreciates Shipstead's prose, which he calls excellent but not flashy. "I think of it as having a transparent quality which is to say that you're drawn into the story more than you are made to consistently pay attention to the style of it.

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NWPR Books
6:46 am
Thu April 10, 2014

'Astonish Me' Is An Artful, Elegant Dance

Maggie Shipstead is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop and the author of Seating Arrangements.
Alisha & Brook

"Etonnez-moi," Sergei Diaghilev, the founder of the Ballets Russes, used to say to his dancers. Astonish me. Maggie Shipstead's book of the same name does not astonish; rather, it charms. It is full of the kind of prose you want to curl up and nest in like a cat: seamless and full of small elegances.

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NWPR Books
11:08 am
Tue April 1, 2014

This Tightly Choreographed Tale Of Ambition And Ballet Will 'Astonish'

iStockphoto

The title of Maggie Shipstead's second novel is: Astonish Me. She did just that --astonish me -- with her debut novel of 2012, called Seating Arrangements. After reading that novel, I likened the then 20-something-year-old Shipstead to "Edith Wharton with a millennial generation edge." The comparison remains sound.

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NWPR Books
10:06 am
Tue July 30, 2013

With 'Arrangements' And 'The Rest,' Two Debut Novelists Arrive

Originally published on Tue July 30, 2013 12:41 pm

The novel I've been recommending this summer to anyone, female or male, who's looking for the trifecta — a good story that's beautifully written and both hilarious and humane — is Seating Arrangements, Maggie Shipstead's debut novel from last summer. I was about to go all old-school and excitedly add that Seating Arrangements is now out in paperback, except since more and more readers are instantly downloading new books at a discount, paperbacks are becoming increasingly irrelevant.

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