A master of the short story, Paley excels at exposing the small regrets and ruptures that chafe and scar landsmen and kin in midcentury. Fortified by a frankness and brass-tacks approach to life tethered to a Yiddish pragmatism, her characters argue over progressive politics and struggle with social change while trying to love and live every day. Paley’s stories offer intimate, often messy personal exchanges that are compelling and familiar—sometimes achingly so.