From an acclaimed and original writer comes a new collection of stories bursting with absurdist plot twists and laced with trenchant wit. Brock Clarke, author of An Arsonist’s Guide to Writers’ Homes in New England and Exley, among other novels, now offers up bite-sized morsels of his trademark social satire that will have readers laughing, and perhaps shifting uncomfortably in their seats. The title story delivers a cringingly biting dissection of racial attitudes in contemporary America, and Clarke also turns his eagle eye to subjects like PTSD, the fate of child actors, and, most especially, marital discord in stories like “Considering Lizzie Borden, Her Axe, My Wife” and “The Misunderstandings.” In “The Pity Palace,” a masterful study in self-absorption and self-delusion, a reclusive husband in Florence, Italy, who believes his wife has left him for a famous novelist, sells tickets to tourists anxious to meet someone more miserable than they. It’s a distinctly Clarkean world, in which readers find themselves reflected back with the distortion of funhouse mirrors—and swept up on a wild ride of heart-wrenching insight and self-discovery.
A collection of short stories from the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of classic American southern literature. Combining stories set in the rural south, Eudora Welty’s own special province, and stories with a European locale, which give a wider range to her fiction, The Bride of Innisfallen demonstrates the remarkable talent of one of the finest short story writers of our time. The gentle wit of the title story, the grave and musical prose of “Circe,” a retelling of Greek myth, the acute character portrayal and extraordinary evocation of the steamy bayou county in “No Place for You, My Love” are all touched with the particular magic that has made Welty one of America’s most beloved storytellers. “The writing throughout is at Ms. Welty’s best level.” —Edward Weeks, The Atlantic
From a famous tough-guy writer, a collection of shockingly funny storiesEver since she got married, Doris has regretted giving up her singing career. After years of domestic drudgery, she decides to take one last crack at becoming an opera singer, even if it means sacrificing everything for the sake of her dream. Her contractor husband is fully supportive, having no idea that the family’s true musical genius isn’t Doris—it’s him.In this and other stories in Career in C Major, James M. Cain shows off a light comedic touch that will surprise readers who are familiar only with his crime novels The Postman Always Rings Twice and Double Indemnity. But Cain had been publishing funny stories, articles, and satire since his early days as a reporter for H. L. Mencken’s Baltimore Sun, and was just as comfortable writing about singers as he was about killers. This collection of Cain’s lighter work shows that if an author is tough it doesn’t mean he can’t crack a smile.
Carolyn Arnold deviates from her typical genre and delves into literary fiction to bring readers Rings of a Tree. This short story draws a poetic correlation between the changing seasons and the stages of our lives and was inspired by the author’s observations of the human journey. It is told through the viewpoint of an oak tree in snapshots of events that take place over generations.
“It’s a well-told tale. One that will stay with you long after you’ve turned the last page.”
–Ann Swann, Bestselling author
“The generational tale she weaves is so true, so honest, that anyone can relate to it and feel compassion for the characters as they go through the trials and successes of life. We only get a sneak peek into their experiences, as we see them through the eyes of an eternal oak tree, but it is no less impactful.”
–Katie Jennings, Bestselling author
Another season begins…
Childhood sweethearts Jake and Cassidy always knew they’d end up getting married, but what they hadn’t been prepared for were the ups and downs that life would present to them.
Follow their family through generations of celebrations and trials, as told through the eyes and ears of an oak tree.
Ghouls, ghosts, and macabre terrors stalk the night in this spine-tingling collection. With tales describing unnatural frights and haunting visions of cosmic terror, you will be taken on a journey into the disturbing imaginations of some of horror's greatest writers. The stories' heroes face incredible creatures, unknowable gods, and supernatural beings who have no regard for human life.Horror literature has its roots in the mists of time. In the 19th century, writers delved into ancient folk tales and local legends to inspire an entire genre. In the 20th century, the next generation of writers brought to life a brand new array of terrifying monsters.The authors in this volume range from Victorian pioneers, such as Bram Stoker and Edgar Allan Poe, to the pulp writers of the 20th century, such as William Hope Hodgson and H. P. Lovecraft. The tradition of horror writing that developed took very different turns on either side of the Atlantic - while American authors turned to unknowable horrors and cosmic terrors, British writers such as E. F. Benson and M. R. James mastered a more familiar form, the classic ghost story.It was not only English-speakers who sought to terrify their readers. The French writer Guy de Maupassant, a prolific short story writer and pupil of the acclaimed novelist Gustave Flaubert, found ways to make his protagonists doubt their own sanity as they faced terrors that would drive any ordinary man mad.This collection of bone-chilling tales comes from the pens of some of horror's most acclaimed writers. Authors include:E. F. BensonAmbrose BierceFrancis Marion CrawfordW. W. JacobsM. R. JamesWilliam Hope HodgsonH. P. LovecraftGuy de MaupassantEdgar Allan PoeBram Stoker
Saki's (a.k.a Hector Hugh Munro) unique brand of humor has resonated with readers for over a century. Both macabre and also at times vicious, his writing nonetheless manages to perfectly capture the trivial absurdities of the Edwardian era in England.
His subjects are almost always louche members of the upper classes - in particular his perfectly observed anti-heroes such as Clovis and Reginald - who wouldn't feel out of place in the world of P.G Wodehouse's 'Bertie Wooster'.
The fatal flaw of hypocrisy receives particular attention in Saki's world, with vengeful justice often meted out in the most unlikely and unexpected fashion by birds, beasts and children alike.
This collection contains both novels by Saki, all of his short story collections, and also his individual short stories the were published outside collections - in total 145 separate works.
Three tricky tangles with technology:
Upon A Midnight
A woman whose job at a bio-weapons lab is
to calculate the destructiveness of the world’s most deadly organisms is
overwhelmed by a personal calamity. And the results could be catastrophic.
(First published in In Poe’s Shadow, Dark Opus Press, 2011 and Tesseracts 16:
Parnassus Unbound, Hades Publications, Inc., 2012.)
A small tropical island claims to have
perfect democracy thanks to technology enabling every citizen to vote on every
issue of governance. When cynical reporter Jayne Connor investigates, the truth
is stranger than anything she could have imagined.
A top gaming competitor seems like the
perfect choice to pilot a virus-sized submersible through the bloodstream by
virtual reality. But can the human mind exist in two realities at one time?
(First published in Canadian Tales of the Fantastic, Red Tuque Books, 2011.)
for Scott Overton:
“A storyteller of boundless skill…a writer
“A gifted wordsmith.”
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