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It down and take a breath Other stories not as good good but wandering too self conscious or me at times eg he dismisses a character we won t hear Starting Over on Blackberry Lane (Life in Icicle Falls from her again It begins with two words THE DECLIVITY and in the stark brutality of those capitals one word small and common the other strange self consciously artful in its unfamiliarity the readereels the beads of sweat prinking into glistening existence on his soon to be The Soul Of A Thief furrowed browor by those two words and those two words alone he knows he is in the grip of Great American Literature remorseless and unforgiving in its brooding power drawn Claiming His Desert Princess (Hot Arabian Nights from the primeval heart of that young dark continent yearning to be read aloud in that slow laconic Lake Wobegon accent that makes almost any prose sound profound as long as the adjectives are as rich as tar the metaphors as obscure as an Indiana railrodder and the sentences long impossibly long 250 words in places homecoming uilts of subordinate clauses stitched lovingly together with straining semicolons curt m dashes and parentheses in an affected Jack Kerouac stream of consciousness that makes you ask how something however well executed could be called ground breaking if it harks back to a style that came into vogue 50 years ago and has antecedents an ocean and a century away in James Joyceull of attention to the minutest detail Secret Baby, Surprise Parents full of nothing BUT detail inact psychological in its intensity looking not at events but at those mundane moments that call to mind crystallize in Mystify (Mystyx, fact those defining moments of death sorrow and yearning long past and all performed with art and style the beautiful tension of holding together such an impossible sentence structure without which Great American Literature is simply impossible the Wile E Coyote running on air or the infinite poise of Muhammad Alirozen in time the intense anticipation of the blow that never The New Baby fell could neverall would spoil the moment but the beauty of the possibility in its grace that makes the world gasp hold its breath and Means succeeds he does it just not uite triumphantly but beautifully artfully gracefully as the cascade of syllables becomes a crescendo of art O THE DECLIVITY THE DECLIVITY the reader gasps at the audacity pretentiousness perhaps yet is suspended almost Wild Streak frozen in that beautiful moment then is releasedrom the spell reaches or his coffee and approaches the next word. Gaging has led the New York Times to call Means one of our most talented younger writer.
St taken a long draw rom a uart bottle of beer and was gasping Say Youll Stay And Marry Me for breathImpressive Butor me the most outstanding Rafaellos Mistress feature of this story indeed of nearly all the stories in this collection is the way Means takes brief detoursrom the plot to The Boleyn King (The Boleyn Trilogy, flesh out the setting the characters the back stories their choice of clothing their musical preferences their workplace or domestic problems And not just the main actors but the cameo appearances the Reverend Simpson of the Alabaster Salvation Church of Haverstraw or the nameless engineer of thereight train who has a good job even if things weren t going the way they should in the world It was a good good jobThere are thirteen short stories in this collection and they cover an impressive range of topics characters and situations although there s a unifying theme of the difficulty of the human condition This is not a book or the comfortably middle class reader who hurries the children into the SUV so that they don t see the homeless man and end up asking awkward uestions about the wet spot on his pants or why he was talking to himselfThere s Coitus in which the man s mind drifts to other places when it should be irmly anchored by the Another Day of Life flesh or What They Did a single paragraph eight pages in length about the legacy of a shoddy property developer or ariend s disappearance in Sleeping Bear Lament There s the two page What I Hope For that opens with I don t want anyone to die in my stories anyOne of the grimmest stories and there are plenty that could be described as grim is The Interruption which chronicles the intersection of two very disparate groups by way of a tedious wedding reception there are the newlyweds and their guests and the DJ and outside in the snow drifts is a group of homeless men trying to survive the coldest night of a harsh winter David Means is ruthless in his portrayal of the best and worst of humanityThis was a truly exceptional collection of short What Would You Like? fiction powerful vivid disturbing realistic sparkling with wit poetic uncompromising beautiful It deserves than the score my algorithm gives it but 803% is still great literature and ualifies asive stars I look Narcissus in Chains (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, forward to reading of David Means especially The Secret Goldfish Stories which was shortlistedor the inaugural Frank O Connor International Short Story Award in 2005 2007 notebook 1st story is so kick ass you have to put. Gs that we cherish most His incomparable distinct voice often wildly humorous always en.
David Means ✓ 5 Download
More serious subjects than I usually like to read but still interesting Only The Widow Predicament and What They Did really made any impression on me the Cinderella for a Night (36 Hours, former so than the latter Having the opposite problem here that I did with Amy Hempel her stories are so lightly written that the impact eludes me while Means s stories are overly dense and the impact is lost somewhere among all his words I ll give another collection a goor the sake of it but I don t have high hopes What an amazing talent Why had I not heard of this authorWhen a local book store had a closing down sale in 2013 I went in and bought every unread book on my 3000 list of great works of literature Sadly I learnt of the sale only a week before they closed and the Classics shelves had already been mostly emptied but I did end up buying over 100 books many of which I was unfamiliar with This short story collection was on the list having earned its place via two major US literary awards it won the 2000 LA Times Book Prize and was a Friend Foe finalistor the 2000 National Book Critics Circle Award but since then it certainly hasn t been a reading priority The Longevity Diet for me as its current score of 803% ranks it a modest 1825 out of 4225 on my current Great Lit listIn any case the one bright spot of lockdown during the COVID 19 pandemic has been the extra reading I ve been able to do during my enforced leisure time Having recently completed a course on writing short stories I ve been working my way through the short story collections in my library to see how the best writers do their job And so to David MeansThis collection opens with Railroad Incident August 1995 Wow what an opening Means not only knows how to construct an engrossing story and to include theine detail that makes the narrative come alive he adds a poetic layer that sparkles with cleverness Take this paragraph as an exampleTo the guys who spotted him a uarter mile later he came out of the hazy air like a wounded animal nothing but a shadow down the tracks moving with a strange hobble that didn t seem human There were Grassroots Innovation four of them their own shirts off nursing a smallire of twigs barely producing lames but lots of whitish smoke slinging in the heavy air Even in the irelight you could see that they were all Architecture and Utopia four skinny in that deprived way knotty with muscle and the blue grey shadows of various tattoos The one who spotted him had ju. In his award winning second collection David Means explores theragility of those thin.
David Means born 1961 is an American writer based in Nyack New York His short stories have appeared in many publications including Esuire The New Yorker and Harper's They are freuently set in the Midwest or the Rust Belt or along the Hudson River in New York