Meet the college graduate working in a whole body–donation clinic; a young woman obsessed with Benedictine monks; a middle-aged woman who becomes a stand-in talk-show guest; unlikely friends who meet in a domestic violence shelter; a young girl and the father who stole her away to escape his wife's mental illness; a graduate student from a suburban family who believes her physical connection to the world is deteriorating. Maud Casey -- author of The Shape of Things to Come, a New York Times Notable Book -- explores how we survive modern crises of loss and love through the lives of emotional and geographic nomads. Each flirts with madness and self-destruction while reaching toward life. These simple gestures of optimism and vitality, gorgeously rendered, make drastic an unforgettable collection.
Praise For Drastic: Stories…
“Well-written . . . novelistic, its theme of loss made palpable and powerful . . . such riches.” — New York Times Book Review
“Tak[ing] a dazzling narrative dare.” — New York Times Book Review on Notable Book of the Year THE SHAPE OF THINGS TO COME
“Refreshingly unaffected. . . . There’s a deliberate tenderness in Casey’s handling of her characters.” — Washington Post Book World
“Striking . . . a gem.” — Elle
“A complex, mature, and compelling novel.” — Chicago Tribune
“Skillful, moving . . . A winning combination of emotional resonance, subtle humor and wisdom.” — Publishers Weekly
“Stories . . . that absolutely soar with illuminating little details that crack everything open and reach for hope.” — Hartford Courant
“Edgy, thought-provoking, charged with raw emotion, Drastic is an impressive collection from a rich and wonderfully unpredictable talent.” — John Searles, author of Boy Still Missing
“Sad and funny, Casey’s warm-hearted, fine stories reach like a pair of outstretched arms for comfort and truth.” — Lily Tuck, author of Limbo, and Other Places I Have Lived: Stories
“[Drastic] is a treasure trove of jewels to live for--stories beautiful, multi-faceted, and fierce with light.” — Stuart Dybek, author of The Coast of Chicago
“Writing with power, beauty, and a searing vision, Maud Casey creates stories that change the world before our eyes.” — Erin McGraw, author of Lies of the Saints
“The characters in Drastic struggle to understand their lives...in prose that is quiet and illuminating.” — Jason Brown, author of Driving the Heart: And Other Stories
“Casey tells these stories with a compassionate voice that would give anyone of these people a reason to live.” — Mary Kay Zuravleff, The Frequency of Souls
“The characters in Casey’s stories find their solace ... in the moments love cracks the rock face of the ordinary.” — Ann Darby, The Orphan Game
“Maud Casey snakes beneath our consciousness, one deft sentence at a time. Drastic is a wholehearted work of art.” — Nicholas Weinstock, author of As Long As She Needs Me
Harper Perennial, 9780060512552, 224pp.
Publication Date: July 8, 2003
About the Author
Maud Casey stories have appeared in The Threepenny Review, Prairie Schooner, The Gettysburg Review, and elsewhere. Casey received her B.A. from Wesleyan University and her M.F.A. in fiction from the University of Arizona. She lives in Washington, DC and teaches in the MFA program at the University of Maryland.