Over the past several decades, Edith Pearlman has staked her claim as one of the all-time great practitioners of the short story. Her incomparable vision, consummate skill, and bighearted spirit have earned her consistent comparisons to Anton Chekhov, John Updike, Alice Munro, Grace Paley, and Frank O’Connor. Her latest work, gathered in this stunning collection of twenty new stories, is an occasion for celebration.

Pearlman writes with warmth about the predicaments of being human. The title story involves an affair, an illegitimate pregnancy, anorexia, and adolescent drug use, but the true excitement comes from the evocation of the interior lives of young Emily Knapp, who wishes she were a bug, and her inner circle.

“The Golden Swan” transports the reader to a cruise ship with lavish buffets-and a surprise stowaway-while the lead story, “Tenderfoot,” follows a widowed pedicurist searching for love with a new customer anguishing over his own buried trauma. Whether the characters we encounter are a special child with pentachromatic vision, a group of displaced Somali women adjusting to life in suburban Boston, or a staid professor of Latin unsettled by a random invitation to lecture on the mystery of life and death, Pearlman knows each of them intimately and reveals them to us with unsurpassed generosity.

In prose as knowing as it is poetic, Pearlman shines a light on small, devastatingly precise moments to reflect the beauty and grace found in everyday life. Both for its artistry and for the recognizable lives of the characters it renders so exquisitely and compassionately, Honeydew is a collection that will pull readers back time and again. These stories are a crowning achievement for a brilliant career and demonstrate once more that Pearlman is a master of the form whose vision is unfailingly wise and forgiving.

What's Inside

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Praise for Binocular Vision:
"I think that Binocular Vision: New & Selected Stories should be the book with which Edith Pearlman casts off her secret-handshake status and takes up her rightful position as a national treasure. Put her stories beside those of John Updike and Alice Munro. That's where they belong."
Ann Patchett, author of Bel Canto, State of Wonder, and This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage
"Edith Pearlman is an absolute master of the form: these are stories that abjure tricks and flash for brilliantly drawn characters, classic construction, and language that sings and aches all at once."—T.C. Boyle, author of The Women
"Edith Pearlman's curiosity and highly empathetic intelligence squire the reader through a marvelous variety of physical and psychological landscapes. But the collection also reveals the lovely common denominator of her fiction, a buoyant grace, which she gently exhorts us to recognize in everyday life."—Chris Adrian, author of A Better Angel

"In a world where volume is often prized over what's actually been said, it is a great comfort to know there are writers like Edith Pearlman, who works outside the noise and writes alongside Chekhov and Frank O'Connor and other master storytellers."—Yiyun Li, author of Gold Boy, Emerald Girl
"So many lives seethe inside this book! It's a city, a country, a world, rendered in devastating detail and delivered from one woman's sparkling and rare imagination. If you read, write, or teach short fiction -- if you believe gorgeous, scrupulously made literature nourishes the soul -- then you must read Edith Pearlman."—Anthony Doerr, author of Memory Wall
"Edith Pearlman is a master of the short story . . . and we're lucky to have Binocular Vision, this generous book of new and selected stories. Pearlman's characters . . . are complicated, fully alive. You can't stop reading, because you know they'll astonish you on the very next page."—Alice Mattison, author of Nothing Is Quite Forgotten in Brooklyn
"These quiet, elegant stories add something significant to the literary landscape."—Roxana Robinson, New York Times Book Review
"Pearlman peels back the surface of the conventional and reveals the more complicated emotions underneath... All of the pieces here have been exquisitely arranged to make this book. Themes recur; narratives speak to one another--the effect is not so much of a sampling as of a suite. Of all the remarkable things about Binocular Vision, this may be the most compelling, that it enacts a worldview in thirty-four precise and subtle movements, reminding us that if connection is elusive, there is nobility in perserverance, and that we are almost always greater than the sum of our parts."—David Ulin, Los Angeles Times
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