Bark

Stories

By Lorrie Moore
(Knopf Publishing Group, Hardcover, 9780307594136, 192pp.)

Publication Date: February 25, 2014

List Price: $24.95*
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Selected by Indie Booksellers for the March 2014 Indie Next List
“Is there any living writer who can so effortlessly chronicle the messy absurdity, unintended humor, and quiet pathos of the human condition better than Lorrie Moore? I had been eagerly awaiting another short story collection from her, and Bark delivers in full. The Moore I've known and loved is back, replete with her trademark pithy one-liners, wry observations, wicked wit, and spot-on renderings of her character's quirks, failings, and stubborn dreams.”
-- Laurie Paus, The Elliott Bay Book Company, Seattle, WA


Description
A new collection of stories by one of America's most beloved and admired short-story writers, her first in fifteen years, since "Birds of America "("Fluid, cracked, mordant, colloquial . . . Will stand by itself as one of our funniest, most telling anatomies of human love and vulnerability." --"The New York Times Book Review, "cover).
These eight masterly stories reveal Lorrie Moore at her most mature and in a perfect configuration of craft, mind, and bewitched spirit, as she explores the passage of time and summons up its inevitable sorrows and hilarious pitfalls to reveal her own exquisite, singular wisdom.
In "Debarking," a newly divorced man tries to keep his wits about him as the United States prepares to invade Iraq, and against this ominous moment, we see--in all its irresistible wit and darkness--the perils of divorce and what can follow in its wake . . .
In "Foes," a political argument goes grotesquely awry as the events of 9/11 unexpectedly manifest themselves at a fund-raising dinner in Georgetown . . . In "The Juniper Tree," a teacher visited by the ghost of her recently deceased friend is forced to sing "The Star-Spangled Banner" in a kind of nightmare reunion . . . And in "Wings," we watch the inevitable unraveling of two once-hopeful musicians, neither of whom held fast to their dreams nor struck out along other paths, as Moore deftly depicts the intricacies of dead-ends-ville and the workings of regret . . .
Here are people beset, burdened, buoyed; protected by raising teenage children; dating after divorce; facing the serious illness of a longtime friend; setting forth on a romantic assignation abroad, having it interrupted mid-trip, and coming to understand the larger ramifications and the impossibility of the connection . . . stories that show people coping with large dislocation in their lives, with risking a new path to answer the desire to be in relation--to someone . . .
Gimlet-eyed social observation, the public and private absurdities of American life, dramatic irony, and enduring half-cracked love wend their way through each of these narratives in a heartrending mash-up of the tragic and the laugh-out-loud--the hallmark of life in Lorrie-Moore-land.



About the Author
LORRIE MOORE is the author of the story collections "Bark, " "Birds of America", "Like Life", and "Self-Help" and the novels "Who Will Run the Frog Hospital"? and "Anagrams". Her work has won honors from the Lannan Foundation and the American Academy of Arts and Letters, as well as the Irish Times International Prize for Fiction, the Rea Award for the Short Story, and the PEN/Malamud Award.


NPR
Wednesday, Feb 26, 2014

It's been 15 years since acclaimed writer Lorrie Moore has brought out a new short story collection. Bark has some clunkers and some keepers, but critic Maureen Corrigan says it was worth the wait. More at NPR.org

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NPR
Tuesday, Feb 25, 2014

Alan Cheuse reviews Lorrie Moore's new collection of stories, her first in 16 years. More at NPR.org

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