Monday, April 12, 2021

Reader's Diary #2185 - Willa Cather: Her Boss

 Willa Cather's short story "Her Boss" is a pretty interesting look at platonic friendships between men and women in the early 20th century. 

The titular boss, Paul Wanning, is the central character in the story and he is dying of a terminal illness. He tells his family and his co-workers and everyone brushes it aside. As a reader, their motives were a bit of a mystery at first. Were they in denial or just callous? As the story progresses though it starts to appear more and more that Paul has built up a rather shallow existence and it is only with death staring him in the face does he seem to grasp that. 

But when his secretary becomes emotional, the first person to do so, as he began to recite his memoirs, they strike up a friendship. 

Unfortunately, rumours start to spread. I'll admit, even I started to suspect the story would turn into a romance. 

Anyway, it's a slow but thoughtful piece of writing. 

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