Cover Image: So Late in the Day

So Late in the Day

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Loved this - can't wait for more from Claire Keegan. Each story from her is like a tiny shiny well polished jewel. Will definitely be recommending.

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Thank you netgalley for the ARC of this beautiful book! Claire Keegan is one of my favorite writers. In this short story collection, she explores gender dynamics and defied expectations. Each of Keegan's three stories builds a layered situation and then turns it on its head; a wisp of a moment, a careless remark, or a premeditated change sets the course of a day or a life on a dramatically different trajectory, and it's fascinating to read as various unravelings begin and build momentum.

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I'm new to the works of Claire Keegan, but I'm excited to read her other works. This was phenomenal. This is layered and moving, and gripped me immediately. One of the included stories, Antarctica, was haunting--I've thought of it often since reading it. I'll likely be thinking about it for a long time after posting this review.

Really stunning and impressive.

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Claire keegan is a master at her craft-the art of the short story. She has impressed me several times now with how she is capable of packing such a punch in such a short amount of pages, & the same can be said here. I don’t generally love short stories, so the brevity is something I have to make a point of overlooking, but as in the other books of Keegan’s that I have read i was very pleasantly surprised by how much stark honesty & profound emotion and relatability can be found in just a few pages. I much prefer Keegan’s novella length stories, but some of these were as good as any short story I’ve ever read!

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Claire Keegan’s collection, So Late in the Day: Stories of Men and Women, contains three short stories— one looking back upon a failed relationship, one providing a slice of life look at a female writer’s residency, and one following a house wife travelling out of town. These short stories ranged from mildly disturbing to full on gruesome, and misogyny was a key theme in each. Despite the dark material, I appreciated Keegan’s insightful observations and her simple, but powerful prose. I look forward to reading more of Keegan’s work.

Thank you to Grove Press and NetGalley for the advanced readers copy!

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Claire Keegan is one of my favorite writers; in these three stories, she builds layered situations--and then turns them on their heads, in fascinating fashion.

Down on the lawns, some people were out sunbathing and there were children, and beds plump with flowers; so much of life carrying smoothly on, despite the tangle of human upsets and the knowledge of how everything must end.

In the brilliant, Irish-born Claire Keegan's newest slim story collection, she explores gender dynamics and defied expectations, and she considers what might be or might have been between the sexes.

Three stories written during various eras in Keegan's career are revised and expanded here: "Antarctica" (which appears in the previously published short story collection Antarctica) explores a married woman's curiosity about being with another man; "The Long and Painful Death" follows a writer at a retreat who faces a headstrong fellow writer; and in "So Late in the Day," a man reflects on what might have been with his lost love, had he made different choices.

These disparate stories showcase Keegan's perfectly spare, captivating storytelling; her writing feels to me like long-form poetry in its striking, unexpected, yet precise language and its evocative power.

Each of Keegan's three stories builds a layered situation and then turns it on its head; a wisp of a moment, a careless remark, or a premeditated change sets the course of a day or a life on a dramatically different trajectory, and it's fascinating to read as various unravelings begin and build momentum.

Keegan is one of my favorite authors, and I'm in for all of her books.

I received a prepublication edition of this book courtesy of NetGalley and Grove Press.

Click here to read my rave reviews of Claire Keegan's novels Foster and Small Things Like These and her short story collection Antarctica.

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This a book made up of three short stories about the dynamics between women and men. The writing is wonderful. I especially liked Antarctica because it is haunting. I don't usually like short stories but I speed through this book.

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Three stories, every one about connection, communication or the lack of it. The stories of men and women. Ordinary stories, ordinary everyday occurences, oridnary relationships, but with a little twist each. And that is what Keegan does best, the quiet, the ordinary. She is the master of usual details that have great meaning to the characters, usual details that make life a life.
As usual, I have trouble with short story collections because I never find the stories of equal quality.
In 𝐒𝐨 𝐋𝐚𝐭𝐞 𝐢𝐧 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐃𝐚𝐲 I found the male reflection and the main character's realisation that he had been treating women, and his fiancée, badly, based on a conversation when she explained his misoginy to him, quite unlikely and very implausible. It just doesn't work.
𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐋𝐨𝐧𝐠 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐏𝐚𝐢𝐧𝐟𝐮𝐥 𝐃𝐞𝐚𝐭𝐡 was the best of the lot, the most nuanced, realistic, filled with rage and disappointment both in men and life.
𝐀𝐧𝐭𝐚𝐫𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐚 is intriguing, the ending is almost brilliant, but it is just a bit too much. There is no motivation for the characters' actions.
My problem with all of the stories is that Keegan had an agenda, she wanted to show misoginy in all of them, but I am not convinced she succeeded. Misoginy is unfortunately an everyday fact, it should be recognized, corrected and eradicated, there is no doubt about that. But here it seems a bit comical, she wanted so hard to show it that the characters came out a bit ridiculous in the end.

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What a small interesting book! It is a tiny collection of three stories set in Ireland and all three of them have common theme of bad male characters that have different, but malevolent impact on women. The story Antarctica gave me the chill I would’t want to experience in my real life.

Thank you to Netgalley and Grove Press for an early copy for an honest review.

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Love everything this author writes. She does not disappoint with this book. Three short novellas in this book, love, betrayal, misogyny and the human condition. Gritty, honest and harrowing stories about women under a patriarchal society. Highly recommend.

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A succinct yet impactful collection of three short stories, all crafted with many layers of nuance and Claire Keegan's sharp prose. Highly recommend for fans of short stories. Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley for an ARC of this title in exchange for an honest review.

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In the UK the title story (originally written for the New Yorker) was published in a standalone volume by Faber, while this U.S. release includes two additional earlier stories. The title story has Cathal spending what should have been his wedding weekend moping about Sabine calling off their engagement at the last minute. It’s no mystery why she did: his misogyny, though not overt, runs deep, most evident in the terms in which he thinks about women. And where did he learn it? From his father. (“The Long and Painful Death” is from Keegan’s second collection, Walk the Blue Fields, and concerns a woman on a writing residency at an author’s historic house in Ireland. She makes a stand for her own work by refusing to cede place to an entitled male scholar. The final story is “Antarctica,” the lead story in that 1999 volume and a really terrific one I’d already experienced before. It’s as dark and surprising as an early Ian McEwan novel.) Keegan proves, as ever, to be a master at portraying emotions and relationships, but the one story is admittedly slight on its own, and its point obvious. (3.5 stars)

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Keegan is known in the U.S. as the author of Small Things Like These and Foster, longer-form works that are touching and tender and compassionate. What a surprise to discover these more grim, more sly, and more shocking “stories of women and men.” These are so well done, and NOT AT ALL what I expected from Keegan.

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While slightly different in tone than the other works of Keegan’s I’ve read, this is my favorite I think. She writes in such a beautiful way, and this collection is particularly haunting. That last story especially will stick with me. I would definitely recommend picking this collection up, or anything by Keegan, for that matter.

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Keegan is fully in charge of her stories and each of these novellas is rewarding, satisfying and thought provoking - all the hallmarks of a good short story. Her characters have complex inner lives and these ideas stay with the reader long after the book is read.
I'll be looking forward to her next book.
Thanks to the publishers and NetGalley for an advance copy to review

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Claire Keegan's latest offering, "So Late in the Day", gives us three revised but previously published short stories. The title story is the most recent, published in The New Yorker in 2022, while "The Long and Painful Death" (2007) and "Antarctica " (1999) are from earlier story collections. Each story examines facets of gender dynamics and the multitude of ways that things can go wrong. I found the twilight zone feel of "Antarctica" to be the most riveting but, overall, I much preferred her later novellas "Foster" and "Small Things Like These."

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These are 3 of Keegan’s exquisite short stories. They deal with female-male relationships and themes of lust, misogyny and love. True gems.

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I really enjoyed Keegan's last two novellas, Foster and Small Things Like These. So Late in the Day collects three of her short stories. The first, So Late in the Day, was published in the New Yorker in 2022. The other two, “The Long and Painful Death”, and “Antarctica” are from earlier collections published in 2007 and 1999. Each of these is a finely-observed character study of misogyny and male anger, which initially appears to be subtle, and escalates into uncomfortable extremes.

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I always struggle to get invested in short stories but each of these really rooted themselves in my head. I can’t stop thinking about them.

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Unsurprisingly, I loved So Late in the Day. All three stories were wonderful. Claire Keegan's writing style is just so perfect. Her stories touch on some dark, difficult topics but somehow still feel almost comforting, Antarctica was the most surprising and my favorite story, I was not expecting that ending! Highly recommend this and all of Keegan's work!

Thank you NetGalley and Grove Press for the e-ARC of So Late in the Day in exchange for my honest review.

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