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The Babysitter at Rest
by Jen George


Overview - Fiction. Five stories--several as long as novellas--introduce the world to Jen George, a writer whose furiously imaginative new voice calls to mind Donald Barthelme and Leonora Carrington no less than Kathy Acker and Chris Kraus. In "Guidance/The Party," an ethereal alcoholic "Guide" in robes and flowing hair appears to help a thirty- three-year-old woman prepare a party for her belated adulthood; "Take Care of Me Forever" tragically lambasts the medical profession as a ship of fools afloat in loneliness and narcissism; "Instruction" chronicles a season in an unconventional art school called The Warehouse, where students divide their time between orgies, art critiques, and burying dead racehorses.  Read more...

 
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More About The Babysitter at Rest by Jen George
 
 
 
Overview
Fiction. Five stories--several as long as novellas--introduce the world to Jen George, a writer whose furiously imaginative new voice calls to mind Donald Barthelme and Leonora Carrington no less than Kathy Acker and Chris Kraus. In "Guidance/The Party," an ethereal alcoholic "Guide" in robes and flowing hair appears to help a thirty- three-year-old woman prepare a party for her belated adulthood; "Take Care of Me Forever" tragically lambasts the medical profession as a ship of fools afloat in loneliness and narcissism; "Instruction" chronicles a season in an unconventional art school called The Warehouse, where students divide their time between orgies, art critiques, and burying dead racehorses. Combining slapstick, surrealism, erotica, and social criticism, Jen George's sprawling creative energy belies the secret precision and unexpected tenderness of everything she writes.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780997366624
  • ISBN-10: 0997366621
  • Publisher: Dorothy a Publishing Project
  • Publish Date: October 2016
  • Page Count: 168
  • Dimensions: 7 x 5.5 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.45 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Fiction > Short Stories (single author)

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2016-08-29
  • Reviewer: Staff

In this debut story collection, George puts a roster of listless women through trials both dismally familiar and captivatingly surreal. In the title story, a caretaker for a baby who will never grow old has an affair with his father (though he provides her with little beyond “chaffed nipples” and “blisters”) and takes up painting. “My memory is mostly gone, though not entirely,” she assures the reader, and the same could be said of the narrator of “Take Care of Me Forever,” who is constrained to an “armless body cast” and is sleeping with an “artist/doctor” who boasts that he is “dabbling in shamanism.” And of the art student in “Instruction,” who studies under a “Teacher/older man with large hands” at a Queens race track, where the curriculum includes “digging horse graves.” Set among this index of libidinous, male authority figures, the introspection of “Futures in Child Rearing” is a refreshing change of pace. Here, a woman equipped with an “ovulation machine” contemplates naming a baby “Horace” or “You Have Reached Your Destination.” Rather than being bogged down by compulsive sexuality or fickle, philosophical notions like “god is a clock with memory, logging hours,” “Futures in Child Rearing” resonates in the simple way it presents an outlandish mind, as when the narrator muses, “I do not want any son of mine resembling a horse facially.” (Oct.)

 
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