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Tenth of December: Stories (Hardcover)

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ITEM# 14215294
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    ITEM#: 14215294

    MacArthur “Genius Grant” fellow George Saunders is the acclaimed author of several collections of short stories, includingPastoralia and CivilWarLand in Bad Decline, as well as a collection of essays and a book for children. He teaches in the creative writing program at Syracuse University.

    People • The New York Times Magazine • NPR • Entertainment Weekly • New York • The Telegraph • BuzzFeed • Kirkus Reviews • BookPage • Shelf Awareness

    One of the most important and blazingly original writers of his generation, George Saunders is an undisputed master of the short story, andTenth of December is his most honest, accessible, and moving collection yet.

    In the taut opener, “Victory Lap,” a boy witnesses the attempted abduction of the girl next door and is faced with a harrowing choice: Does he ignore what he sees, or override years of smothering advice from his parents and act? In “Home,” a combat-damaged soldier moves back in with his mother and struggles to reconcile the world he left with the one to which he has returned. And in the title story, a stunning meditation on imagination, memory, and loss, a middle-aged cancer patient walks into the woods to commit suicide, only to encounter a troubled young boy who, over the course of a fateful morning, gives the dying man a final chance to recall who he really is. A hapless, deluded owner of an antiques store; two mothers struggling to do the right thing; a teenage girl whose idealism is challenged by a brutal brush with reality; a man tormented by a series of pharmaceutical experiments that force him to lust, to love, to kill—the unforgettable characters that populate the pages ofTenth of December are vividly and lovingly infused with Saunders’s signature blend of exuberant prose, deep humanity, and stylistic innovation.

    Writing brilliantly and profoundly about class, sex, love, loss, work, despair, and war, Saunders cuts to the core of the contemporary experience. These stories take on the big questions and explore the fault lines of our own morality, delving into the questions of what makes us good and what makes us human.

    Unsettling, insightful, and hilarious, the stories in Tenth of December—through their manic energy, their focus on what is redeemable in human beings, and their generosity of spirit—not only entertain and delight; they fulfill Chekhov’s dictum that art should “prepare us for tenderness.”


    “The best book you’ll read this year.”—The New York Times Magazine

    “A feat of inventiveness . . . This eclectic collection never ceases to delight with its at times absurd, surreal, and darkly humorous look at very serious subjects. . . . Saunders makes you feel as though you are reading fiction for the first time.”—Khaled Hosseini, author of The Kite Runner

    “The best short-story writer in English—not ‘one of,’ not ‘arguably,’ but the Best.”—Mary Karr,Time

    “A visceral and moving act of storytelling . . . No one writes more powerfully than George Saunders about the lost, the unlucky, the disenfranchised.”—Michiko Kakutani,The New York Times

    “Saunders’s startling, dreamlike stories leave you feeling newly awakened to the world.”—People


    ISBN 9780812993806
    Genre FICTION / Short Stories (single author)
    Format Hardcover
    Pages 251
    Publisher Date 2013-01-08 00:00:00.0
    Publisher Random House Inc
    Copyright Year 2013
    Height 9.0 in
    Wdth 6.0 in
    Thickness 1.0 in
    Unit weight 0.95 lb
    Language English
    Subtitle Stories
    Edition Number 1
    Audience General/trade
    Authors Saunders, George

    Product Reviews

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    • WORST book I’ve read in a long, long while

      I picked this book up because I’d read four or five glowing reviews, one of which saying it was the ‘best book you’ll read this year.’ It was, in fact, the WORST book I’ve read in a long, long while. The reviews always seemed to use the word “hilarious,” which just stumped me. What part was hilarious? The poor woman who murders animals because she thinks her husband probably wants her to? The retarded child they keep chained in their backyard? The Iraq vet who’s angry and confused? Yeah, it was a hilarious read (please note, SARCASM). It came off like that English teacher everyone had that always talked about writing, but cannot do it himself (or self-published and ended up with 400 copies of his poetry chapbook in his trunk). Filled with unlikable characters, boring plots, and muddled storytelling, I hated it. This was the first book in a long time that I read in one day; not because I couldn’t put it down, but because I wanted to just get through it and put it behind me.

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