Janus Criticism

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Reviews of Beattie's work are often mixed; it seems as if critics either love or hate her work. Although her 1989 novel, Picturing Will, was both a popular and critical success, her short story collection Where You'll Find Me—the collection which includes "Janus"—met with mixed reviews.

For example, Thomas Edwards, in an otherwise fairly negative review appearing in The New York Times Book Review, singled out "Janus" as being "sufficiently open and worked out to give convenient access to the materials from which they are all made." He found the rest of the stories "terse" and less "ample in scale and mood" than her earlier stories.

On the other hand, Michiko Kakutani deemed the story "a highly crafted, almost surreal meditation on the intrusion of time past into time present and on the perils of everyday life."

A good deal of the controversy surrounding Beattie's...

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This section contains 450 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Janus Study Guide
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Short Stories for Students
Janus from Short Stories for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.