Ecstatic Cahoots by Stuart Dybek
Fifty Short Stories

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Some of the 50 stories collected here, ranging in length from two lines to 13 pages, first appeared in print decades ago; and some of them, fragments and one-offs...Few writers can command the apparently autobiographical first person with such finesse and with such daring...
-Kirkus

Synopsis

In this remarkable collection of bite-size stories, Stuart Dybek, one of our most prodigious writers, explores the human appetite for rapture and for trust. With fervent intensity and sly wit, he gives each tale his signature mix of characters—some almost ghostly, others vividly real—who live in worlds tinged with surreal potential. There are crazed nuns hijacking streetcars, eerie adventures across frozen ponds, and a boy who is visited by a miniature bride and groom every night in his uncle's doomsday compound. Whether they are about a simple transaction, a brave inquiry, a difficult negotiation, or shared bliss, the stories in Ecstatic Cahoots target the friction between our need for ecstatic self-transcendence and our passionate longing for trust between lovers, friends, family, and even strangers.
Call it micro-fiction or mini-fiction, flash fiction or short shorts. Whatever the label, the marvelous encounters here are marked by puzzlement, anguish, and conspiratorial high spirits. In this thrilling collection, Stuart Dybek has once again re-envisioned the possibilities of fiction, creating myriad human situations that fold endlessly upon each other, his crackling prose drawing out the strange, the intimate, and the mysterious elements in each.

 

About Stuart Dybek

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Stuart Dybek is the author of two collections of short fiction, The Coast of Chicago and Childhood and Other Neighborhoods, as well as a volume of poetry, Brass Knuckles. A professor of English at Western Michigan University, he lives in Kalamazoo.
 
Published June 3, 2014 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 209 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Ecstatic Cahoots
All: 2 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 0

Kirkus

Above average
on May 20 2014

Some of the 50 stories collected here, ranging in length from two lines to 13 pages, first appeared in print decades ago; and some of them, fragments and one-offs...Few writers can command the apparently autobiographical first person with such finesse and with such daring...

Read Full Review of Ecstatic Cahoots: Fifty Short... | See more reviews from Kirkus

Publishers Weekly

Good
on Apr 28 2014

A roller coaster of realist and fantastical scenes, slice-of-life character sketches, and page-long fables, Dybek’s collection of flash fiction jostles from story to story like a streamlined zephyr...Dybek uses all his creative muscle in these brief stories, which are both elusive and precise.

Read Full Review of Ecstatic Cahoots: Fifty Short... | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

Reader Rating for Ecstatic Cahoots
87%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 17 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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