By Adam Johnson
(Penguin Books, Paperback, 9780142001950, 256pp.)
Publication Date: March 25, 2003
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The "remarkable" (The New Yorker) debut story collection by the author of The Orphan Master's Son, winner of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize in Fiction
An ATF raid, a moonshot gone wrong, a busload of female cancer victims determined to live life to the fullestthese are the compelling terrains Adam Johnson explores in his electrifying debut collection. A lovesick teenage Cajun girl, a gay Canadian astrophysicist, a teenage sniper on the LAPD payroll, a post-apocalyptic bulletproof-vest salesmaneach seeks connection and meaning in landscapes made uncertain by the voids that parents and lovers should fill. With imaginative grace and verbal acuity, Johnson is satirical without being cold, clever without being cloying, and heartbreaking without being sentimental. He shreds the veneer of our media-saturated, self-help society, revealing the lonely isolation that binds us all together.
Adam Johnson, a former Wallace Stegner Fellow, teaches creative writing at Stanford University. His fiction has appeared in Esquire, The Paris Review, Harper's, Missouri Review, and New England Review, as well as Best New American Voices. He is the author of the acclaimed novels Parasites Like Us and The Orphan Master's Son, winner of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize in Fiction.
"A collection worth owning...a writer worth watching...stories worth reading." —The New York Times Book Review
"Remarkable." —The New Yorker
"Masterful." —The San Francisco Chronicle