Something Is Out There
By Richard Bausch
(Vintage, Paperback, 9780307279149, 288pp.)
Publication Date: April 5, 2011
Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover
Categories: Short Stories (single author)
In these eleven unforgettable stories, Richard Bausch plumbs the depths of familial and marital estrangement, the gulfs between friends and lovers, the fragility and impermanence of love—and manages to find something quite surprising: human hope.
Bausch’s assured style, signature grace, and penetrating wit shine on every page, confirming his stature as one of America’s most beloved and acclaimed writers.
Richard Bausch is the author of seven previous volumes of short stories and eleven novels. He is the recipient of an award in literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Lila Wallace–Reader’s Digest Writers’ Award, the PEN/Malamud Award for Short Fiction, and, for his novel Peace, the American Library Association’s W. Y. Boyd Prize for Excellence in Military Fiction and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. A past chancellor of the Fellowship of Southern Writers, he lives in Memphis, Tennessee, where he holds the Moss Chair of Excellence in the Writers Workshop of the University of Memphis.
“Dark, brutally exact, nearly perfect stories. . . . Something Is Out There shows a writer at the very top of his form. . . . So emotionally insightful, so masterful in subtle manipulation of plot and theme that the sheer beauty of the stories’ construction will move you almost as much as what happens in them.”
—San Francisco Chronicle
“Evocative. . . . Indelible. . . .Concentrated works of tremendous resonance. . . . One can imagine a writer of Bausch’s sensitivity as the psyche’s seismologist, taking the measure of every fault, stress, shift, tremor and collision, and reminding us that stability and love are often as much a matter of choice as of fate, a perpetual work-in-progress, a hard-won and forever besieged state of grace.”
—Los Angeles Times
“Nineteen books into his career, Bausch seems determined to keep witnessing an array of human sorrows with compassion. . . . Again and again, he excavates the darkest corners of his characters’ lives without giving in to despair.”
—The New York Times
“Bausch’s work is most powerful in its depictions of ordinary life, not simply its quiet desperation but also its profoundly delicate beauty. . . . Again and again, Bausch asks the reader to believe in the possibility of happiness, in the small, abiding comforts to be found in our relationships despite their suffocating imperfections. . . . There’s not another American writer out there right now more adept at revealing the happiness that’s always waiting for us, just beyond our reach.”
—The Boston Globe
“Expertly wrought. . . . Capturing his subjects at turning points and emotional reversals, Bausch shakes us out of any sense of complacency. His stories feel urgently true. . . . A few of these pieces, including the sensational title story, are masterfully plotted nail-biters. But what Bausch gets most terrifyingly right is that all states of being are precarious—delirious happiness, jealousy, despair, regret—poised on the verge of disintegration, transfiguration.”
—The Cleveland Plain-Dealer
“Brilliant. . . . Bausch’s characters’ histories and personalities are depicted so artfully you can’t help but feel for them.”
—St. Louis Post-Dispatch
“If you aren’t a fan of Richard Bausch’s fiction you should be. . . . One of the joys of reading Bausch is his Faulknarian sense that despite all the sadness, the tsoris, the turmoil of the people in these stories, one feels they will, to borrow a word from the master, ‘endure.’ . . . This is the work of an excellent writer at the top of his form.”
—The Washington Times
“Bausch’s stories throb with painful truth. . . . [He] sets out the facts and descriptions about his working class characters with an almost agonizing clarity, leaving the reader to draw conclusions, make morals. . . . These stories deserve a close read.”