Today a Woman Went Mad in the Supermarket


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The uncannily relevant, deliciously clear-eyed collected stories of critically acclaimed, award-winning 'American literary treasure' (Boston Globe), ripe for rediscovery, with a foreword by Elizabeth Strout.

About the Author

Hilma Wolitzer is a recipient of Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts fellowships, an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature, and a Barnes & Noble Writers for Writers Award. She has taught at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, New York University, Columbia University, and the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. Her first published story appeared when she was thirty-six, and her first novel eight years later. Her many stories and novels have drawn critical praise for illuminating the dark interiors of the American home. She lives in New York City.


Short stories that pack a pithy poignant punch by a 91-year-old mistress of the craft … From the first page, dialogue and descriptions crackle through the quotidian and Hilma’s piquant prose illuminates scenes both prosaic and profound
*Harper's Bazaar*

Wolitzer’s vision of the world, for all its sorrow, is often hilarious and always compassionate.
*New York Times Book Review*

[Wolitzer’s writing] shines a light on the extraordinary and magical in seemingly ordinary, every day lives … Wolitzer is sure to find many new fans with this collection

Wolitzer is a genius of the short story … Wolitzer is above all an observer, and she has a wonderful eye: compassionate, slightly jaundiced, erotic, urbane and often very funny
*Sunday Times*

Wolitzer is a champ at the closely observed, droll novel of manners.

The stories, full of references to Formica counters and Jell-O moulds, are riven with the stresses of parenting and marriage, and are incredibly funny … Her stories are disarmingly playful, but they also explore such subjects as maternal ambivalence and female desire in a way that feels radical even today
*Daily Telegraph*

Oh, how I loved these stories! I've been a fan of Hilma Wolitzer since my teens and this collection offers everything I adore about her novels: each story dazzles with an unflinching portrayal of a woman at a pivotal moment in her life
*Joanna Rakoff, author of MY SALINGER YEAR*

Wit, wisdom and warmth form the foundation of this sparkling collection. Wolitzer is a natural-born storyteller whose rigour, attention and generosity create miracles on each and every page
*Tayari Jones*

Hilma Wolitzer’s skill is to capture what on the surface seems like ordinary lives, but uncovering the extraordinary that lies underneath
*Living Magazine*

Like its author, the stories in Today A Woman Went Mad shine as brightly, cut as deeply and entertain as deliciously as if they’d been written today
*Los Angeles Times*

Today a Woman Went Mad in the Supermarket is electric: with wit, with rage, with grief, with the kind of prose that makes you both laugh and thrill to the darker, spikier emotions just barely visible under the bright surface. What a wonderful collection of stories
*Lauren Groff*

Wolitzer is especially strong on wise – and wisecracking – women, even in the harrowing tale of a meltdown in a supermarket ... You’ll laugh till you weep

Written over more than half a century, these thirteen stories circle themes such as love, insomnia and motherhood … [The collection is] beady-eyed and often humorous, its pages packed with details that reveal as much as entire novels
*Mail on Sunday*

[Wolitzer] shows us the ever-shifting alliances of family life and ways in which love can both change and endure.
*New York Times*

There are equal amounts of drollery and despair in these wonderful stories … Wolitzer’s take is fresh and funny and finely tuned to the carefree moments that lighten the emotional load … It’s so beautifully done, sly and spry, the perfect mixture of funny and sad
*Daily Mail*

Wolitzer is less well known than Tyler and Strout, though her writing is every bit as sharp, funny and insightful as her contemporaries ... Whether it’s the titular woman in the supermarket, or a wife who brings her husband to open house viewings to manage his depression, Wolitzer is observant and truthful on the tensions that exist in daily life
*Irish Times*

Wolitzer doesn’t just brilliantly capture what we imagine is recognisable ordinary life, she reveals the unique magic that is so absolutely transcendent, it makes us see and live in the world differently ... A fabulous collection brimming with the compassion that Wolitzer is known for
*Caroline Leavitt*

[A] sage collection of stories ... Throughout, Wolitzer captures the feel of each moment with characters who charm with their honesty. The result is a set of engaging time capsules.
*Publishers Weekly*

A fascinating time capsule of womanhood, marriage and motherhood over the last century … a fabulous book
*Emma Straub*

Immensely gratifying, poignant, funny … Breathtaking
*Elizabeth Strout (from the foreword)*

Hilma Wolitzer sees the miraculous, and the tragic, in modest lives and domestic particulars – wonders that might pass as ordinary events to the untrained eye. She magnifies the world. She insists, in one gorgeous sentence after another, that there’s no such thing as a usual hour, let alone a usual day
*Michael Cunningham*

With her trademark dry wit and abiding compassion, Wolitzer explores the telling details of everyday life in ways that are unsettling, insightful and wholly original. These stories will linger in your mind and get under your skin. They shimmer with life
*Christina Baker Kline*

To read Hilma Wolitzer is to laugh in a special way and to allow yourself little intermissions of sheer satisfaction in which you lay the open book facedown on your heart and snuggle with the human race.
*Gail Godwin*

A timeless examination of the bonds that connect us and the staying power of love

Wry, terse, full of telling detail. Think The Stepford Wives meets Samantha Bee
*The Tablet*

Witty and wonderful, these insightful stories are about the imperfections of everyday life … [Her characters] find the sunny, funny moments that transform the ordinary into the extraordinary

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