Download and read online The Peripatetic Coffin and Other Stories in PDF and EPUB The stories in The Peripatetic Coffin and Other Stories, a collection from Ethan Rutherford, map the surprising ways in which the world we think we know can unexpectedly reveal its darker contours. In stories that are alternately funny, persuasive, and compelling, unforgettable characters are confronted with, and battle against, the limitations of their lives. Rutherford’s work has been selected by Alice Sebold for inclusion in the volume of The Best American Short Stories that she edited, and also published in Ploughshares, One Story, and American Short Fiction.
Download and read online Bobcat and Other Stories in PDF and EPUB Winner of the 2013 Believer Book Award. At turns heartbreaking and wise, tender and wry Bobcat and Other Stories establishes Rebecca Lee as one of the most powerful and original voices in contemporary fiction. A university student on her summer abroad is offered the unusual task of arranging a friend's marriage. Secret infidelities and one guest's dubious bobcat-related injury propel a Manhattan dinner party to its unexpected conclusion. Students at an elite architecture retreat seek the wisdom of their revered mentor but end up learning more about themselves and one another than about their shared craft. In these acutely observed and scaldingly honest stories Lee gives us characters who are complex and flawed, cracking open their fragile beliefs and exposing the paradoxes that lie within their romantic and intellectual pursuits. Whether they're in the countryside of the American Midwest, on a dusty prairie road in Saskatchewan, or among the skyscrapers and voluptuous hills of Hong Kong, the terrain is never as difficult to navigate as their own histories and desires. Rebecca Lee is the author of the critically acclaimed novel The City Is a Rising Tide and the short story collection Bobcat and Other Stories. She has been published in The Atlantic and Zoetrope, and in 2001 she received a National Magazine Award for her short fiction. Originally from Saskatchewan, Lee is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop and is now a professor of creative writing at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington. 'Bobcat and Other Stories is nothing short of brilliant. Rebecca Lee writes with the unflinching, cumulatively devastating precision of Chekhov and Munro, peeling back layer after layer of illusion until we're left with the truth of ourselves ...This extraordinary story collection is sure to confirm its author as one of the best writers of her generation.' Ben Fountain, author of Billy Flynn's Long Halftime Walk 'Mesmirisingly strange...[Lee's] eccentric eloquence...makes Bobcat so potent and powerful.' New York Times 'In all these stories, confused, sometimes misdirected men and women struggle to figure out their places in the world, stumble into often unhappy situations and sometimes, to their great misfortune, get exactly what they were hoping for...Lee captures little pieces of all of us and she does it in language so delicate and precise that you'll re-read passages for the joy of it.' Star Tribune 'Slim, sly and brilliant.' Oprah.com 'Lee writes with an unflinching eye toward the darkest and saddest aspects of life, often finding humor where least expected. This fresh, provocative collection, peerless in its vehement elucidation of contemporary foibles, is not to be missed.' Publisher's Weekly 'This is a potent, quietly daring and sturdily imagined collection, rich with a subtlety in short supply in our current short-fiction landscape, where writers seem to settle for lobbing verbal grenades in the reader's general direction. In stories like "Bobcat" and "Fialta," there is the real sense of significance, as though a whole subway system's worth of meaning is roaring beneath the text, ready to whisk the reader anywhere they need to go.' National Post
Download and read online The Miniature Wife in PDF and EPUB In the tradition of George Saunders and Aimee Bender, an exuberantly imagined debut that chronicles an ordinary world marked by unusual phenomena. The eighteen stories of Manuel Gonzales’s exhilarating first book render the fantastic commonplace and the ordinary extraordinary, in prose that thrums with energy and shimmers with beauty. In “The Artist’s Voice” we meet one of the world’s foremost composers, a man who speaks through his ears. A hijacked plane circles a city for twenty years in “Pilot, Copilot, Writer.” Sound can kill in “The Sounds of Early Morning.” And, in the title story, a man is at war with the wife he accidentally shrank. For these characters, the phenomenal isn’t necessarily special—but it’s often dangerous. In slightly fantastical settings, Gonzales illustrates very real guilt over small and large marital missteps, the intense desire for the reinvention of self, and the powerful urges we feel to defend and provide for the people we love. With wit and insight, these stories subvert our expectations and challenge us to look at our surroundings with fresh eyes. Brilliantly conceived, strikingly original, and told with the narrative instinct of a born storyteller, The Miniature Wife is an unforgettable debut.
Download and read online This Is Not an Accident in PDF and EPUB From a truly distinctive voice brimming with wicked humor, tales of the little disasters that befall and befuddle us April Wilder’s characters (some normal, some less so) have this in common: they are spiraling (or inching) toward self-destruction. An almost poetic range of disasters are sought out and savored in This Is Not an Accident, from bad romance to iffy adoption decisions to unsteady liaisons with animals and dolls; from compulsive driving to compulsive written correspondence with oneself. A house sitter hides among poets in Salt Lake City after his canine charge dies tragically. A grandma’s boyfriend holds a backyard barbecue under siege—with the kids as his pint-sized guards. The world of these slightly off-center individuals is similarly off by a few degrees. But by the end, we realize it’s not as far off as we would like to think: this is modern American life. What Wilder captures is not a dark side, but rather the side we all know well and hide from others, and ourselves. In the tradition of Wells Tower and Jim Shepard, This Is Not an Accident signals a bold new voice and delivers the kind of insanely incisive moments only a master of the human condition can conjure.
Download and read online Norwegian by Night in PDF and EPUB Crime Writers Association John Creasey Dagger Award winner An ECONOMIST TOP FICTION TITLE OF THE YEAR A FINANCIAL TIMES BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR A GUARDIAN BEST CRIME AND THRILLER OF THE YEAR A KIRKUS REVIEWS BEST CRIME NOVEL OF THE YEAR “A soulful, humane, and sparklingly funny novel. Spend some time with Sheldon and company in the Scandinavian wilderness and you just might make peace with your god, your ghosts, and yourself.” — Gary Shteyngart, author of Super Sad True Love Story Sheldon Horowitz—widowed, impatient, impertinent—has grudgingly agreed to leave New York and move in with his granddaughter, Rhea, and her new husband, Lars, in Norway—a country of blue and ice with one thousand Jews, not one of them a former Marine sniper in the Korean War turned watch repairman. Not until now, anyway. Home alone one morning, Sheldon witnesses a dispute between the woman who lives upstairs and an aggressive stranger. When events turn dire, Sheldon seizes and shields the neighbor’s young son from the violence, and they flee the scene. As Sheldon and the boy look for a safe haven in an alien world, past and present weave together, forcing them ever forward to a wrenching moment of truth. “This is one of the best books of the season, of any genre.” — Buffalo News “Miller joins the ranks of Stieg Larsson, Henning Mankell, and Jo Nesbø, the holy trinity of Scandinavian crime novelists.” — Booklist (starred review) AN INDIE NEXT SELECTION
Download and read online The Corpse Exhibition in PDF and EPUB A blistering debut that does for the Iraqi perspective on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan what Phil Klay’s Redeployment does for the American perspective “[A] wonderful collection.” —George Saunders, The New York Times Book Review The first major literary work about the Iraq War from an Iraqi perspective—by an explosive new voice hailed as “perhaps the best writer of Arabic fiction alive” (The Guardian)—The Corpse Exhibition shows us the war as we have never seen it before. Here is a world not only of soldiers and assassins, hostages and car bombers, refugees and terrorists, but also of madmen and prophets, angels and djinni, sorcerers and spirits. Blending shocking realism with flights of fantasy, The Corpse Exhibition offers us a pageant of horrors, as haunting as the photos of Abu Ghraib and as difficult to look away from, but shot through with a gallows humor that yields an unflinching comedy of the macabre. Gripping and hallucinatory, this is a new kind of storytelling forged in the crucible of war.
Download and read online The Kissing List in PDF and EPUB An inventive debut that recalls the imagination of Aimee Bender and the sardonic wit of Lorrie Moore. The interlocking stories in The Kissing List feature an unforgettable group of young women – Sylvie, Anna, Frances, Maureen – as their lives connect, first during a year abroad at Oxford, then later as they move to New York on the cusp of adulthood. We follow each of them as they navigate the treachery of first dates, temp jobs and roommates, failed relationships and unexpected affairs – all the things that make their lives seem full of possibility, but also rife with potential disappointment. Shot through with laugh-out-loud lines, yet still wrenchingly emotional and resonant, The Kissing List is a book about women who bravely defy expectations and take outrageous chances in the face of a life that might turn out to be anything less than extraordinary. From the Hardcover edition.
Download and read online Stealing Lincoln s Body in PDF and EPUB On the night of the 1876 presidential election, a gang of counterfeiters attempted to steal the entombed embalmed body of Abraham Lincoln and hold it for ransom. Craughwell returns to this bizarre, and largely forgotten, event with the first book to place the grave robbery in historical context. This rousing story of hapless con men, intrepid federal agents, and ordinary Springfield citizens offers an unusual glimpse into late-nineteenth-century America.
Download and read online Damage Control in PDF and EPUB "Dermont's short story collection, which follows her debut novel (The Starboard Sea, 2012), demonstrates the author's versatility and sardonic humor...Dermont delivers strong prose and intriguing characters who frequently defy stereotypical ideals...the overall effect is a tight collection that takes the reader in unexpected, often disconcerting, directions. Full of irony and contradictions, this compilation of contemporary short stories is a worthwhile effort."–Kirkus Reviews A luminous collection of short stories focusing on privilege and entitlement, from the bestselling author of The Starboard Sea Damage Control displays Amber Dermont's remarkable gift for portraying characters at crossroads. In "Lyndon," a daughter visits presidential landmarks following the death of her father. In "Damage Control," a young man works at an etiquette school while his girlfriend is indicted for embezzlement. A widow rents herself to elderly women and vacations with them as a "professional grandchild" in "Stella at the Winter Palace." And in "The Language of Martyrs" a couple houses a mail order bride on behalf of the husband's Russian mother. Dermont's stories have previously been published in many literary magazines and have also been featured in anthologies edited by Jane Smiley and Dave Eggers. Damage Control includes three previously unpublished pieces.
Download and read online Dear Committee Members in PDF and EPUB A Best Book of the Year: NPR and Boston Globe Finally a novel that puts the "pissed" back into "epistolary." Jason Fitger is a beleaguered professor of creative writing and literature at Payne University, a small and not very distinguished liberal arts college in the midwest. His department is facing draconian cuts and squalid quarters, while one floor above them the Economics Department is getting lavishly remodeled offices. His once-promising writing career is in the doldrums, as is his romantic life, in part as the result of his unwise use of his private affairs for his novels. His star (he thinks) student can't catch a break with his brilliant (he thinks) work Accountant in a Bordello, based on Melville's Bartleby. In short, his life is a tale of woe, and the vehicle this droll and inventive novel uses to tell that tale is a series of hilarious letters of recommendation that Fitger is endlessly called upon by his students and colleagues to produce, each one of which is a small masterpiece of high dudgeon, low spirits, and passive-aggressive strategies. We recommend Dear Committee Members to you in the strongest possible terms. From the Trade Paperback edition.
Download and read online Red Brick Black Mountain White Clay in PDF and EPUB New York Times 100 Notable Books of 2012 "Beautiful, haunted, evocative and so open to where memory takes you. I kept thinking that this is the book that I have waited for: where objects, and poetry intertwine. Just wonderful and completely sui generis." (Edmund de Waal, author of The Hare with Amber Eyes) An unforgettable voyage across the reaches of America and the depths of memory, Red Brick, Black Mountain, White Clay follows one incredible family to discover a unique craft tradition grounded in America¹s vast natural landscape. Looking back through the generations, renowned critic Christopher Benfey unearths an ancestry--and an aesthetic--that is quintessentially American. His mother descends from colonial explorers and Quaker craftsmen, who carved new arts from the trackless wilds of the frontier. Benfey¹s father escaped from Nazi Europe--along with his aunt and uncle, the famed Bauhaus artists Josef and Anni Albers--by fleeing across the Atlantic and finding an eventual haven in the American South. Bricks form the backbone of life in North Carolina¹s rural Piedmont, where Benfey¹s mother was raised among centuries-old folk potteries, tobacco farms, and clay pits. Her father, like his father before him, believed in the deep honesty of brick, that men might build good lives with the bricks they laid. Nurtured in this red-clay world of ancient craft and Quaker radicalism, Benfey¹s mother was poised to set out from home when a tragic romance cracked her young life in two. Salvaging the broken shards of his mother¹s past and exploring the revitalized folk arts resisting industrialization, Benfey discovers a world brimming with possibility and creativity. Benfey¹s father had no such foundation in his young life, nor did his aunt and uncle. Exiled artists from Berlin¹s Bauhaus school, Josef and Anni Albers were offered sanctuary not far from the Piedmont at Black Mountain College. A radical experiment in unifying education and art, Black Mountain made a monumental impact on American culture under Josef¹s leadership, counting Robert Rauschenberg, John Cage, and Buckminster Fuller among its influential students and teachers. Focusing on the natural world, innovative craftsmanship, and the physical reality of materials, Black Mountain became a home and symbol for an emerging vision of American art. Threading these stories together into a radiant and mesmerizing harmony, Red Brick, Black Mountain, White Clay is an extraordinary quest to the heart of America and the origins of its art.
Download and read online Man V Nature in PDF and EPUB *SHORTLISTED FOR THE LA TIMES BOOKS PRIZE 2015* A SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE NOTABLE BOOK OF 2014 A BOSTON GLOBE BEST FICTION OF 2014 ROXANNE GAY’S TOP TEN BOOKS OF 2014 AN AMAZON BEST SHORT STORY COLLECTION OF 2014 AN iBOOK BEST OF 2014 Told with perfect rhythm and unyielding brutality, these stories expose unsuspecting men and women to the realities of nature, the primal instincts of man and the dark humor and heartbreak of our struggle to not only thrive, but survive. In “Girl on Girl”, a high-school girl goes to disturbing lengths to help an old friend; in “Meteorologist Dave Santana”, an insatiable temptress pursues the one man she can’t have; and in the title story, a long fraught relationship comes undone when three friends get impossibly lost on a lake that is impossible to get lost on. In Diane Cook’s perilous worlds, the quotidian surfaces conceal darkly surreal elements that illuminate our more curious, troubling and bewildering behavior.
Download and read online Ulysses Annotated in PDF and EPUB Ulysses (1922) is a novel by the Irish author James Joyce. It was first serialised in parts in the American journal The Little Review from March 1918 to December 1920, and then published in its entirety by Sylvia Beach on 2 February 1922, in Paris. Joyce's technical innovations in the art of the novel... he used a complex network of symbolic parallels drawn from the mythology, history, and literature, and created a unique language of invented words, puns, and allusions. One of the most important works of Modernist literature, it has been called "a demonstration and summation of the entire movement". "Before Joyce, no writer of fiction had so foregrounded the process of thinking." Written over a seven-year period from 1914 to 1921. No book has ever been more eagerly and curiously awaited by the strange little inner circle of book-lovers and littérateurs than James Joyce's "Ulysses".
Download and read online Syzygy Beauty in PDF and EPUB A book-length lyric essay triangulating between contemporary art, the construction of a house, and the direct address of a lover.
Download and read online The Good Earth in PDF and EPUB A Chinese peasant overcomes the forces of nature and the frailties of human nature to become a wealthy landowner.