Life and Other Shortcomings


Life and Other Shortcomings is a collection of linked short stories that takes the reader from New Orleans to New York City to Madrid, and from 1970 to the present day. The women in these twelve stories make a number of different choices: some work, others don’t; some stay married, some get divorced; others never marry at all. Through each character’s intimate journey, specific truths are revealed about what it means to be a woman―in a relationship with another person, in a particular culture and era―and how these conditions ultimately affect her relationship with herself. The stories as a whole depict patriarchy, showing what still might be, but certainly what was, for some women in this country before the #MeToo movement. Both a cautionary tale and a captivating window into women's lives, Life and Other Shortcomings is required reading for anyone interested in an honest, incisive, and compelling portrayal of the female experience.


International Book Awards Winner American Fiction Awards Winner Independent Book Publishers Association Benjamin Franklin Award American Book Fest Best Book Finalist

Praise for Life and Other Shortcomings

“  A compelling collection that captures the mystery and menace beneath love and family life.

Kirkus Reviews, read the full review here

“  Corie Adjmi has a flair for dramatizing scenes. She homes in on the killer moment, and her dialogue is so honest that I was cringing at times . . . It is just so vivid.

Susan Breen, author of The Fiction Class

“  All that glitters is not gold in Corie Adjmi's wonderful short story collection Life and Other Shortcomings. Adjmi exposes the fear, envy, and yearning that simmer just beneath the surface of her characters' beautiful lives. Her writing is both elegant and powerful. I was hooked from the first page to the last.

Ellen Sussman, New York Times best-selling author of four novels, A Wedding in Provence, The Paradise Guest House, French Lessons and On a Night Like This

“  We're all familiar with the happy parts of relationships, we've been raised on them, but Life and Other Shortcomings gets into the nitty-gritty of what comes over time... Corie Adjmi doesn't shy away from the bitterness of real life.

Paperback Paris

“  I'm in love with this book. It is just so good. It's real and definitely something that makes you feel like you've been heard and you have a friend.

Ann Garvin, Founder of Tall Poppy Writers and USA Today best-selling author of I Like You Just Fine When You're Not Around, The Dog Year and On Maggie's Watch

“  Poignant, laugh-out-loud funny, and unnerving all at once. This collection is replete with emotionally charged, compassionate, true to life characters. Stories come together to create layer over layer of veiled emotional and psychological complexity.

Nicole Dweck

“  Featuring 12 stories about women in various cities and eras, each share a connection to one another. And you're along for the journey as they reveal certain truths about the female experience. It's an anthem, and also a cry for a change.


“  Life and Other Shortcomings is a slice of life literary work full of lessons that need to be shared today. These stories are so honest and relatable, it hurts.

Readers' Favorite

“  When you're tired of binge-watching Netflix, this collection is an honest cautionary tale about the female experience.

Brit + Co

“  Take a break from reality and relax with a great new book.


“  Corie Adjmi's stories are sharply written, unsparing, and spot-on. With wisdom and humanity, Life and Other Shortcomings plumbs the mysteries of adult life: the menacing underside of love, the protean nature of grief, and the baffling difficulty of staying true to ourselves and the things we value most. Assured in her storytelling, Adjmi writes with force and perception. Her stories are a must-read.

Elyssa Friedland, author of The Floating Feldmans, The Intermission and Love and Miss Communication

“  Pitch perfect and very haunting, Life and Other Shortcomings is a true delight. Adjmi's interlocking stories are as funny as they are tragic. Her characters are so real and relatable, you'll find yourself rooting for them, even as they get into trouble. Adjmi is a great new talent.

Alison Espach, author of The Adults

“  Corie Adjmi's linked short stories tell of the heartaches and difficulties of growing up — physically and spiritually — as a woman in a patriarchal society. Wonderful writing!

Francoise Brodsky, Director, Shakespeare and Co

“  Among the women of these stories are dutiful housewives, devoutly religious women, insecure teenagers, and many other colorful characters. Pop culture references peppered throughout - including nostalgic callbacks to Dr. Scholl's sandals, Swanson's Frozen Dinners, Star Trek, and The Brady Bunch - only add to the realism and heart of the book. These stories are full of drama, humor, descriptive language, and insight, and they make for a very enjoyable read. Adjmi subtly, but so perceptively, unfolds the characters' private fears, hopes, and dreams, zeroing in on how a single experience or event can change a life.

Jewish Book Council

“  Twelve accounts bear witness to the female experience, and how the choices we make look differently depending on when and where we live. As a whole, the collection illustrates the influence of patriarchy, especially so before the #MeToo movement.


“  A Travel Must-Read.

The Hollywood Times

“  Life and Other Shortcomings is both a cautionary tale and a captivating window into women's lives. An honest, incisive, and compelling portrayal of the female experience.

Beyond the Bookends

“  Twelve stories highlight very different women and their journeys. Take a peek into these women's lives and into their relationships.

Frolic Media

“  Honest portrayal of women in a patriarchal world.


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