Fiction Archive

On Jess Walter’s “Beautiful Ruins”

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In that moment, with the strings swelling to crescendo in your mind as you read it, as Dee Moray the beautiful (but not too beautiful) American actress steps off the boat and onto the shore, Walter writes how Pasquale, the dreamer, fell in love “Not so much with the
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Review: DOG YEARS by Melissa Yancy

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Melissa Yancy’s debut story collection, Dog Years, is an exploration into the intersection between our public and private selves. Each of the nine stories follows a central protagonist who is navigating the world, often uneasily and unsuccessfully, trying hard to figure out how to create a life with fewer
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Review: HERE I AM by Jonathan Safran Foer

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Though it asks the questions, Here I Am is not here to answer inquiries, eschewing easy answers or clean endings. It may not be a manual for life, but it is a way of locating oneself in the world.
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Review: EIGHTY DAYS OF SUNLIGHT by Robert Yune

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As Yune crafts a story of family ties and gently illustrates the breakdown of said family, his characters come to life through dry wit, keen observation and just enough boob jokes to make readers truly feel like they’re spending time with men in their twenties.
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Review: INHERITED DISORDERS: STORIES, PARABLES, & PROBLEMS by Adam Ehrlich Sachs

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The shorts are wide-ranging. Some are heartbreaking in less than 500 words; others are unexpectedly hilarious whether outright or with a darker flavor to their humor. Disorders is a contemporary stable of parables not only about fathers and sons, but about the everyday struggle to live one’s life in
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Review: WHISKEY, ETC.: SHORT (SHORT) STORIES by Sherrie Flick

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In her miniature portraits of a failed salesman transformed through food, a forgetful elderly woman, a young woman making dinner for a sometime-boyfriend at the same moment that he is dying, Flick examines seduction and heartbreak, the complications of new relationships, the dynamics of long-time ones, love, loss, and
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Whit Stillman and Jane Austen: Together Again for the First Time

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Everybody from P.D. James to your best friend's sister seems to be writing Jane Austen fan fiction but the only fanfic I'm really excited about right now is Whit Stillman's reimagining of Lady Susan, an early epistolary novella.
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Story vs. History: Competing Ambitions in Viet Thanh Nguyen’s THE SYMPATHIZER

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Like many Gen-Xers, I don’t know as much as I should about the Vietnam War. Sure I’ve heard stories—from an uncle who cleared land mines, from a middle school teacher ravaged by Agent Orange.
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Critiquing Communication Creatively: Egan’s Twitter-Formatted “Black Box” As a Critique of 21st Century Conversation

Today, we have this new platform for conversation, a no-man’s land in the arena of how we communicate with one another. We can say just about whatever we want however we want, we can share and consume anything from artwork to politics, lip syncs to gun violence.
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Review: THE VERSIONS OF US by Laura Barnett

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The Versions of Us Laura Barnett Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, May 2016 416 pp; $26.00 Buy: hardcover | eBook The Versions of Us, Laura Barnett’s tapestry romance, is in many ways Margaret Atwood’s “Happy Endings” fleshed into a full-novel. The novel’s main style device employs just what the title promises:
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