Few authors write with such sheer love of story and language as T. C. Boyle, and that is nowhere more evident than in his inventive, wickedly funny, and always entertaining short stories. Here are 14 new tales previously unpublished in book form.
By turns mythic and realistic, farcical and tragic, ironic and moving, Boyle's stories have mapped a wide range of human emotions. The stories here reflect his maturing themes. They find Boyle engagingly testing his characters' emotional and physical endurance, whether it's a group of giants being bred as weapons of war in a fictional Latin American country, a Russian woman who ignores dire warnings in returning to her radiation-contaminated home, a hermetic writer who gets more than a break in his routine when he travels to receive a minor award, or a man in a California mountain town who goes a little too far in his concern for a widow.
TC Boyle reading his own stories is simply nirvana. Usually I don't care for writers narrating their own work, but Boyle reads the way he writes---like a house on fire.
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This guy must have got A++ in every creative writing course he ever took - he never puts a word wrong. Stories are lean and action-packed and almost always have a point. So why only three stars? Honestly, it is just because I am a middle aged woman, possibly with a pedantic bent, and he is not floating my boat. I feel Boyle is writing for guys (there is quite a bit of violence and pain, and his female characters all cook much better than I do). Don't let me put you off if you like well written short stories set in the USA.
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