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.
Crazy things keep happening to Pam Pastor and she is left with no choice but to chronicle them. In this second collection of stories, she tells us:
How Pong Pagong ended her shot at stardom;Why her grandma burned all her trolls when she was in sixth grade;How she terrorized her brother on Facebook;Why she became a flower girl at 31;How a New York socialite almost kidnapped her;How she learned survival skills from Bear Grylls; andWhy taxi drivers think she’s the white lady of Balete Drive.
There are also tales about dead rabbits, Potato Corner, thirty bras, hospitals, a missing terrarium, New Kids on the Block, beer, and balikbayan boxes. Fun for the whole family.
The rules change at 50! The New York Times–bestselling author and former SNL writer offers advice on living this stage of life with your dignity intact. If you or someone you know has just turned fifty, it’s time to accept that the rules of life have changed, and that fifty is not the new thirty for most of us. Leland Gregory understands the forgetful minds, sagging bodies, and flagging pride of his fellow middle-agers, and in 50 Things Not to Do after 50, he offers helpful—and hilarious—advice for combating the humiliations this stage of life can bring. In this lighthearted and sometimes painfully on-target book, you’ll learn that what we used to do in our twenties, thirties, and forties should be avoided at all costs from now on. For example, regardless of gender, under no circumstances should you ever . . . Attempt to wear leather pantsStart a story that involves a lot of names—you’ll forget most of them before the story is overStalk your high school sweetheart on Facebook; the person you had the hots for in 10th grade probably isn’t so hot anymoreGet drunk in Pamplona and decide to run with the bullsVolunteer to be a drug muleSay things like “fo’shizzle,” “whatev,” or “cray-cray”. . . And do we really need to mention thongs, Speedos, or jeggings? Leland Gregory, the New York Times–bestselling author of Stupid American History and America’s Dumbest Criminals, has been praised by Katie Couric as the “chronicler of Stupid America.”
The essential guide to enjoying modern lesbianism These days, lesbians are everywhere you turn, streaming for your entertainment or commenting on the important political movements and hairdos of the day. Yet as more doors open on this often-misunderstood world, who hasn’t found him- or herself wondering how he or she might uncover the secrets, experience the glamour, enjoy the special advantages of lesbianism? Helen Eisenbach’s hilariously irreverent guide provides a front-row seat to a largely female universe where love, lust, and forbidden laughter are just a fingertip away. Sharing hard-earned truths with sly insight and wit, Eisenbach reveals the fascinating inside story of a growing culture and shows how anyone can acquire the skills and state of mind to be a lesbian. From flirting to family values, from work to play, from enlightening friends, relatives, or strangers to figuring out how to have sex with women or choose a pet, Lesbianism Made Easy answers all your questions—and some you didn’t know you had.
Under the midnight sun of Arctic Norway, Cecilie goes online looking for friends, and stumbles across Hector Herrera. They start chatting and soon realise that 'love at first word' might just be possible. But there are two big problems: Hector lives thousands of miles away in Mexico. And he's about to get married.
Cecilie's whole life has been anchored by sticking to what she knows, and her job at the cafe in the town in which she grew up. Can she really change her whole life for someone she's never met? And will Hector escape his turbulent past, not to mention his imminent marriage, and make a leap of faith to change the path he's on?
Zoe Folbigg's latest novel is a story of two people, living two very different lives, and whether they can cross a gulf, ocean, sea and fjord to give their love a chance.
Praise for The Distance:
'Right from the first few pages it had me hooked!' Harriet.
'Her writing is beautiful' E C Simpson.
'Loved it as much, maybe even more than The Note!' Jean Kirk.
'A beautifully written book about love, life and far away places' Hannah Alexander-Wright.
'A very readable and heartwarming story' Heather.
'The mix of different cultures places and plot between Cecilie and Hector was magical' Kat.
“Lake City is a darkly funny and extremely relevant debut novel about American inequality and moral authority, featuring a sad-sack antihero who takes way too long to grow up. When he finally does, the results are beautiful, and the book ultimately becomes an elegy for a now-gone Seattle, and a lesson in how the place we’re from never fully lets us go.” —Anthony Doerr, author of All the Light We Cannot See
Hunkered down in his childhood bedroom in Seattle's worn-out Lake City neighborhood, idealistic but self-serving striver Lane Bueche licks his wounds and hatches a plot to win back his estranged Manhattanite wife.
He discovers a precarious path forward when he is contracted by a wealthy adoptive couple to seduce and sabotage a troubled birth mother from his neighborhood. Lane soon finds himself in a zero-sum game between the families as he straddles two cultures, classes, and worlds. Until finally, with the well-being of the toddler at stake, Lane must choose between wanting to do the right thing (if he could only figure out what that is) and reclaiming his idea of privilege.
"Snarky social commentary on the world of Seattle have-nots." —Kirkus Reviews
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