Even Lionel Shriver has something to say about Amy Bloom:
The pleasures of "Away" are the ordinary pleasures of extraordinary novels: finely wrought prose, vivid characters, delectable details. There's a soft-smile, along-the-way humor. A business card condenses one character's whole frustrated life: "Yaakov Shimmelman / Tailor, Actor, Playwright / Author of The Eyes of Love / Pants pressed and altered." Having been given a thesaurus to help her learn English, Lillian tends to think in synonyms -- as when Meyer is late for their first rendezvous: "It is rude (crass, inelegant, uncouth, and also lacking in social refinement)." Employed deftly and never overused, the device is charming.
Not that I need any critics or reviewers to convince me to look out for her latest book. I'm an Amy Bloom fan since I first read her short story collection, Come to Me. (How I came to pick up Come to Me though, is another story.) Her writing is sparkling, and her characters raw with yearnings and insecurities - yet there is a palpable compassion in Bloom's prose, an understanding, and forgiveness of human vunerability. Amy Bloom makes me feel the grief and heartaches of characters caught in situations I have never been before, and that is the most powerful sort of writing around - the power to create empathy.