A review of "The Shipping News" — 7 years ago
If your only familiarity with the title “The Shipping News” is the film of the same name, starring Kevin Spacey, Julianne Moore and Dame Judi Dench, then you do not know this story.
The film, which sincerely disappointed Ms. Proulx (and nearly scuttled the film adaptation of her fantastic short story Brokeback Mountain) is not faithful to the emotional thread which runs through the story as presented in the novel. This book is a Pulitzer Prize winner, and quite deservingly so. Whereas the film is almost a series of unrelated vignettes in a year (or so) in the life of Quoyle, the book actually provides real meaning to the life of this sad man. There is a cohesive, linear story here which will take your breath away, leave you gasping, leave you in tears and leave you puzzled.
Ms. Proulx absolutely deserved better than what Hollywood gave her, and The Shipping News absolutely deserves your time.