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Cover for Imaginary Museums

Imaginary Museums


Nicolette Polek


List Price: 15.95*
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January 2020 Indie Next List

“It’s no small feat to establish a spellbinding presence in the span of 26 micro-stories, but Nicolette Polek pulls it off masterfully with Imaginary Museums. Her formula is so subtle that I can’t really figure out how she achieves these literary sleights of hand with such consistency: one part magical realism here, a dash of unadorned honesty there, stir in some gallows humor, and serve chilled.”
— Sam Faulkner, A Room Of One's Own Bookstore, Madison, WI
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Summer 2020 Reading Group Indie Next List

“These sentences zag when you expect them to zig. And don’t get me started on the zigging. Trying to recount any of these stories will take way longer than it will to read them; they are masterworks of compression that unfold into sagas of falconers and an air conditioning museum. But they also finish with tidy endings, landing the dismount from each impossible trick with a word, a gesture that somehow makes sense of the fantasia preceding. Oh, yeah: and it’s really, really funny.”
— Benjy Caplan, Green Apple Books & Music, San Francisco, CA
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A collection of flash fiction that feels seemingly arbitrary with an ache of human longing for connection peppered in. . . . These bizarre but beautiful stories transport you elsewhere with no intention of bringing you back. --Ashleah Gonzales, W magazine

In this collection of compact fictions, Nicolette Polek transports us to a gently unsettling realm inhabited by disheveled landlords, a fugitive bride, a seamstress who forgets what people look like, and two rival falconers from neighboring towns. They find themselves in bathhouses, sports bars, grocery stores, and forests in search of exits, pink tennis balls, licorice, and independence. Yet all of her beautifully strange characters are possessed by a familiar and human longing for connection: to their homes, families, God, and themselves.

Soft Skull Press, 9781593765866, 128pp.

Publication Date: January 14, 2020

About the Author

Nicolette Polek is a writer from Cleveland, Ohio. She is a recipient of the 2019 Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers' Award.