Better Living Through Plastic Explosives by Zsuzsi Gartner

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All the Anxious Girls launched Zsuzsi Gartner into the ranks of the most promising short story authors writing today. Better Living Through Plastic Explosives doubles down on Ms. Gartner’s strengths...
-NY Journal of Books

Synopsis

From an emerging master of short fiction and one of Canada's most distinctive voices, a collection of stories as heartbreaking as those of Lorrie Moore and as hilariously off-kilter as something out of McSweeney's.

In Better Living through Plastic Explosives, Zsuzsi Gartner delivers a powerful second dose of the lacerating satire that marked her acclaimed debut, All the Anxious Girls on Earth, but with even greater depth and darker humour. Whether she casts her eye on evolution and modern manhood when an upscale cul-de-sac is thrown into chaos after a redneck moves into the neighbourhood, international adoption, war photography, real estate, the movie industry, motivational speakers, or terrorism, Gartner filets the righteous and the ridiculous with dexterity in equal, glorious measure. These stories ruthlessly expose our most secret desires, and allow us to snort with laughter at the grotesque world we'd live in if we all got what we wanted.

 

About Zsuzsi Gartner

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ZSUZSI GAR TNER is the author of the critically acclaimed and bestselling story collection All the Anxious Girls on Earth and the editor of Darwin's Bastards. She is the winner of a 2007 National Magazine Award for Fiction and the recipient of numerous awards for her magazine journalism. In 2011, her short-story collection, Better Living Through Plastic Explosives, was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize, alongside a novel by literary giant Michael Ondaatje.
 
Published April 5, 2011 by Hamish Hamilton. 232 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Better Living Through Plastic Explosives
All: 2 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 0

NY Journal of Books

Above average
Reviewed by Michael Adelberg on Nov 27 2012

All the Anxious Girls launched Zsuzsi Gartner into the ranks of the most promising short story authors writing today. Better Living Through Plastic Explosives doubles down on Ms. Gartner’s strengths...

Read Full Review of Better Living Through Plastic... | See more reviews from NY Journal of Books

National Post arts

Above average
Reviewed by Jeet Heer on Apr 08 2016

Almost all of Gartner’s characters are dissatisfied with their lives, especially by the gap between their desires and their achievements. Marianne Moore once wrote that poets create “imaginary gardens with real toads in them.” Gartner has given us an artificial world with real people living in it.

Read Full Review of Better Living Through Plastic... | See more reviews from National Post arts

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