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This Isn't the Sort of Thing That Happens to Someone Like You : Stories
by Jon McGregor


Overview -

The powerful first collection of short stories by Jon McGregor.

From the publication of his first Booker-nominated novel at the age of twenty-six, Jon McGregor's fiction has consistently been defined by lean poetic language, a keen sense of detail, and insightful characterization.  Read more...


 
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More About This Isn't the Sort of Thing That Happens to Someone Like You by Jon McGregor
 
 
 
Overview

The powerful first collection of short stories by Jon McGregor.

From the publication of his first Booker-nominated novel at the age of twenty-six, Jon McGregor's fiction has consistently been defined by lean poetic language, a keen sense of detail, and insightful characterization. Now, after publishing three novels, he's turning his considerable talent toward short fiction. The stories in this beautifully wrought collection explore a specific physical world and the people who inhabit it.

Set among the lowlands and levees, the fens and ditches that mark the spare landscape of eastern England, the stories expose lives where much is buried, much is at risk, and tender moments are hard-won. The narrators of these delicate, dangerous, and sometimes deeply funny stories tell us what they believe to be important-in language inflected with the landscape's own understatement-while the real stories lie in what they unwittingly let slip.

A man builds a tree house by a river in preparation for a coming flood. A boy sets fire to a barn. A pair of itinerant laborers sit by a lake and talk, while fighter-planes fly low overhead and prepare for war. "This Isn't the Sort of Thing That Happens to Someone Like You" is an intricate exploration of isolation, self-discovery, and the impact of place on the human psyche.

Praise for "Even the Dogs"

"A rare combination of profound empathy and wonderful writing." -Mark Haddon, author of "The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time "

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781596913493
  • ISBN-10: 1596913495
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • Publish Date: March 2012
  • Page Count: 262


Related Categories

Books > Fiction > Short Stories (single author)

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2012-02-06
  • Reviewer: Staff

This debut collection by Bermuda native and Man Booker Prize–nominee McGregor (If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things) comprises 30 stories roughly organized by their various British settings. The book includes a few perhaps too-clever experimental short forms mixed with longer traditional stories, which rise to the top as the book’s better reads. “In Winter the Sky” juxtaposes free verse narrative poems penned by Joanna and the prose narrative of how she and her husband, George, struggle to profitably operate their family farm. The collection’s plum is the ironic, eerie “Wires,” where university student Emily Wilkinson’s windshield is smashed by a lone sugar beet flying off the back of an open lorry. Rescued by two dubiously chivalrous men, Emily is too busy worrying about breaking up with her ill-tempered boyfriend to sense the danger in her current predicament. The majority of these tales—like the delightfully surreal antiwar satire, “I’ll Buy You a Shovel”—are full of quirky characters and accessible enough to hold general readers’ interest, while the other pieces will entice fans of experimental literary fiction. Agent: Jin Auh, the Wylie Agency. (Apr.)

 
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