NYRB Classics collector. Reads anything, so long as it's good. Sometimes historian. Frequently grumpy: you've been warned. Also at aliceunderskies.tumblr.com.
A few of these stories are five star--and this coming from a person who doesn't usually care for the short story medium. Read all together in such volume they tend to run together tiresomely, treading and retreading the same themes of marital dischord and disenchanted suburbia. Despite the unpleasant aspect of reading far too many of one author's short stories in nearly one sitting, this book raised my (previously abysmal) opinion of Updike. Some of the stories are on par with the best I've read, leaving me with the belief that Updike's talent lay in the shorter form.