Dance of the Happy Shades
In the stories that make up Dance of the Happy Shades, the deceptive calm of small-town life is brought memorably to the page, revealing the countryside of Southwestern Ontario to be home to as many small sufferings and unanticipated emotions as any place. This is the book that earned Alice Munro a devoted readership and established her as one of Canada's most beloved writers. Winner of the Governor General's Literary Award for fiction in 1968, Dance of the Happy Shades is Munro's first short story collection. (From Penguin Canada)
Here they found themselves year after year — a group of busy, youngish women who had eased their cars impatiently through the archaic streets of Rosedale, who had complained for a week previously about the time lost, the fuss over the children's dresses, and, above all, the boredom, but who were drawn together by a rather implausible allegiance — not so much to Miss Marsalles as to the ceremonies of their childhood, to a more exacting pattern of life which had been breaking apart even then but which survived, and unaccountably still survived, in Miss Marsalles's living room.
From Dance of the Happy Shades by Alice Munro ©1968. Published by Penguin Random House Canada.