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Stories keep mattering by reimagining their own methods, manners, and techniques. A writer has to believe, and prove, that there are, if not new stories, then new ways of telling old ones.
The collection includes 29 of these new ways of telling stories. Herein are experiments with form by David Foster Wallace and Joe Wenderoth, flawless executions of realism from Mark Richard and Jhumpa Lahiri, and stories that waver in what could most easily be described as parallel realities. The granddaddy of this latter category, George Saunders's "Sea Oak," brilliantly fuses the inherent humor of male stripping with the undead. Elsewhere Gary Lutz proves himself to be one of our foremost artists of the sentence in "People Shouldn't Have to Be the Ones to Tell You," and Christine Schutt serves up "You Drive," an elusive piece unsettling with undertones of father-daughter incest.
The varied treasures in The Anchor Book of New American Short ...