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All Things, All at Once: New and Selected Stories by Lee K. Abbott

By Lee K. Abbott

Listed here are tales approximately fathers and sons, tales approximately women and men, and tales in regards to the relationships among males by means of considered one of our so much proficient tale writers. The narrator of "The Who, the What and the Why," starts off breaking into his personal apartment as a type of treatment after his daughter dies. In "The Human Use of Inhuman Beings," the most personality realizes that his closest courting is to an angel, who seems to him basically to announce the loss of life of household. All issues, All at Once reminds us why Lee ok. Abbott is to be precious: his ideal pitch for stories of hapless Southwesterners, his manner with sympathetic irony, his eye that skillfully notes the awkward humiliations—common heartbreak, fractured families—and files all of it in lyrical, affectionate language. In stories new and from prior collections Abbott examines lived existence and the lies we inevitably inform approximately it.

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All Things, All at Once: New and Selected Stories

Listed below are tales approximately fathers and sons, tales approximately women and men, and tales concerning the relationships among males through one in all our such a lot proficient tale writers. The narrator of "The Who, the What and the Why," starts off breaking into his personal residence as a kind of remedy after his daughter dies. In "The Human Use of Inhuman Beings," the most personality realizes that his closest courting is to an angel, who seems to him in simple terms to announce the loss of life of family.

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I asked, trying to make a joke out of it. I touched her thin biceps; her smallpox vaccinations reminded me of tiny etched skulls. Her naughty eyes were full of mischief. I shook my head, No. A Dixie cup filled with pills was on the night table, along with an antique rotary phone. ” She said he had seduced her simply by saying that with her shoulderlength, fluffedout red hair and pinup body she looked like Hayworth in Gilda. “I missed that one also,” I said. Every new song or book he liked was labeled groundbreaking, and if he didn’t care for it he said it was mush, or trivial, or decadent.

I’m sorry,” I said dully, and felt stupid after I said it. That’s how you know if you’re going to survive. I felt worn out from the strain of whispering. ” She had an unfocused look in her eyes, as if the room were spinning and she was ready to pass out. ” “I’m sure he didn’t mean it that way,” she said contritely, as if she were speaking for him. It’s not the end of the world. He looked like a greeter in a casino. ” She yawned then, pointing her garish toenails. They were married by an uncle of his, a judge in Orlando, when she’d first started to show, and she followed him back to Durham for his senior year and law school.

France was thick-necked and wetmouthed and his shifty, recessed eyes were the shade of pale watercolors. He asked me in a calm, impersonal voice when my father had been in Nam. ” “Fucking-A no-man’s-land,” France said, shoving some sticks of Juicy Fruit in his mouth. ” France then called the war a lobotomy. The air smelled loamy and saturated with ozone, and June bugs swarmed over the imitation Japanese lanterns bolted on either side of the front door. His trained, pumpkin-colored hair was brushed flat and glistened in the razor-cut style favored by greasers.

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