The New Yorker Fiction July 2020

Two of the fiction in the July 2020 issues of The New Yorker are Jack and Della by Marilynne Robinson was published July 20, 2020 and The Lottery by Shirley Jackson, originally published June 26, 1948 was republished July 27, 2020.

The story Jack and Della is a melancholy story about a young man who had recently been released from prison. He meets the teacher Della, and has a positive relationship with her. The story ends very sadly and the desperation and loss really touched me.

In the article, Marilynne Robinson on Expanding the World of ‘Gilead‘ also published July 20 discusses Jack’s position in the “Gilead” series of novels. In the first novel in the series, “Gilead,” Jack is a respectful and mysterious man who comes home to his family and then disappoints his family by leaving abruptly. He isn’t able to explain himself to anyone other than the minister John Ames. The fiction Jack and Della is adapted from the fourth book in the series, “Jack.”

The Lottery is disturbing and has the distinction of generating the most mail for a fiction piece. (“The Lottery” Letters) To me it ends very unsatisfying. The events that conclude the story are taken so matter-of-fact by the community and the anticipation of a horror as if it were a natural fact of life.

[Many of these links may require a subscription to The New Yorker.]

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