You Are Not a Stranger Here
By Adam Haslett
Anchor Books, Paperback, 9780385720724, 240pp.
Publication Date: August 12, 2003
List Price: $14.95*
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In his bestselling and lavishly praised first book of stories, Adam Haslett explores lives that appear shuttered by loss and discovers entire worlds hidden inside them. The impact is at once harrowing and thrilling.
An elderly inventor, burning with manic creativity, tries to reconcile with his estranged gay son. A bereaved boy draws a thuggish classmate into a relationship of escalating guilt and violence. A genteel middle-aged woman, a long-time resident of a psychiatric hospital, becomes the confidante of a lovelorn teenaged volunteer. Told with Chekhovian restraint and compassion, and conveying both the sorrow of life and the courage with which people rise to meet it, You Are Not a Stranger Here is a triumph of storytelling.
“Spectacular. . . . You should buy this book, you should read it, and you should admire it. . . . [It] is the herald of a phenomenal career.” —The New York Times Book Review
“Extraordinary. . . . Frighteningly tender. . . . Displays an order as natural as a tree branch in winter—lithe and achingly austere.” —The Boston Globe
“Haslett possesses a rich assortment of literary gifts: an instinctive empathy for his characters and an ability to map their inner lives in startling detail; a knack for graceful, evocative prose; and a determination to trace the hidden arithmetic of relationships.” —The New York Times
“Fascinating. . . . Haslett is an eloquent, precise miniaturist.” —The New Yorker
“Elegant. . . . Invigorating. . . . [Haslett has an] assured, almost democratic empathy for his admirably varied characters. . . . These are graceful, mature, witty stories.” —San Francisco Chronicle