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Fun With Problems (2010)

by Robert Stone(Favorite Author)
3.13 of 5 Votes: 5
0618386254 (ISBN13: 9780618386253)
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
review 1: I continue to be somewhat beguiled by Robert Stone's short stories. Sometimes they go off on unexpected tangents that cause my interest to wane, like the latter part of "Charm City" or the middle of "The Wine-Dark Sea." But other times they're just great, like "From the Lowlands" and "High Wire" and "The Archer." Even in the less-focused stories, there's lots of great insight and humor, lots of lines I found myself reading again and thinking how I would write them down somewhere, if I was the kind of person who wrote such things down somewhere.
review 2: Grim tales of manipulative, self-destructive, self-deluding drunks and addicts, almost exhausting in relentless disasters. The prose is first-rate: taut plotting, characterization, and dialogue; insightful (bot
... moreh on the part of the narrator and the protagonists--they may be drunks, but they're not dumb); and often painfully realistic. Only the last story, "The Archer," relieves this tension--a sort of latter-day Flannery O'Connor, serving up hilarious, sarcastic misanthropy on a steaming platter. But at least the story ends with a ray of hope and decency--with the protagonist's realization that "It was too easy to mock the tag end of [a better era:], to do a burlesque on the failure of public joy. Someone ought to show it with a degree of compassion, he thought. Someone ought to have a heart about it." less
Reviews (see all)
best writing, best characters, people always doing the most unexpected things, scary insights
Dense fast moving prose yet an endless repeat of self destructive characters.
just started but love the title
great short stories
Uh, sucked.
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