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25 Remote Warehouse Literature- A to Z

The Bigness of the World

by

The Bigness of the World Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In Lori Ostlunds debut collection people seeking escape from situations at home venture out into a world that they find is just as complicated and troubled as the one they left behind.

In prose highlighted by both satire and poignant observation, Ostlund offers characters that represent a different sort of everyman—men and women who poke fun at ideological rigidity while holding fast to good grammar and manners, people seeking connections in a world that seems increasingly foreign. In “Upon Completion of Baldness” a young woman shaves her head for a part in a movie in Hong Kong that will help her escape life with her lover in Albuquerque. The precocious narrator of “All Boy” finds comfort when he is locked in a closet by a babysitter. In “Dr. Deneaus Punishment” a math teacher leaving New York for Minnesota as a means of punishing himself engages in an unsettling method of discipline. A lesbian couple whose relationship is disintegrating flees to the Moroccan desert in “The Children beneath the Seat.” And in “Idyllic Little Bali” a group of Americans gathers around a pool in Java to discuss their brushes with fame and ends up witnessing a mans fatal flight from his wife.

In the eleven stories in The Bigness of the World we see that wherever you are in the world, where you came from is never far away.

Review:

"Ostlund's remarkable debut collection deftly navigates the treacherous shoals of decaying relationships in which the protagonists often escape to faraway lands in order to find themselves, or, at the very least, their partners. Fate, for the globe-trotting teacher-entrepreneur of 'And Down We Went,' takes the form of an untimely bird dropping; in 'Bed Death,' it is a Malay waitress who casually takes a sip of orange juice from the narrator's glass. Ostlund's artful prose is playfully complex and illuminating, evocative and unsentimental, as in 'Upon the Completion of Baldness,' in which the narrator's girlfriend returns home from a trip completely bald. Remarks the narrator, 'the chilly desert air seemed to startle her as though, in that moment, she realized that there was a price to be paid for having no hair, and while I still said nothing, I was happy to see her suffer just a bit.' A specific disenchantment inhabits these stories — the disenchantment of the uncompromising romantic confronted with the evaporative nature of love. Each piece is sublime." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

About the Author

Lori Ostlund has taught in Spain, Malaysia, and New Mexico and currently lives and teaches in San Francisco. Her work has appeared in such journals as the Georgia Review, Kenyon Review, New England Review, and Hobart.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments

The Bigness of the World

Bed Death

Talking Fowl with My Father

The Day You Were Born

Nobody Walks to the Mennonites

Upon Completion of Baldness

And Down We Went

Idyllic Little Bali

Dr. Deneau's Punishment

The Children Beneath the Seat

All Boy

Product Details

ISBN:
9780820334097
Author:
Ostlund, Lori
Publisher:
University of Georgia Press
Subject:
Short Stories (single author)
Subject:
Short stories
Subject:
Stories (single author)
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Series:
Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction
Publication Date:
20091031
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Pages:
232
Dimensions:
8.60x5.70x.90 in. .92 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z

The Bigness of the World New Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$35.50 In Stock
Product details 232 pages University of Georgia Press - English 9780820334097 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Ostlund's remarkable debut collection deftly navigates the treacherous shoals of decaying relationships in which the protagonists often escape to faraway lands in order to find themselves, or, at the very least, their partners. Fate, for the globe-trotting teacher-entrepreneur of 'And Down We Went,' takes the form of an untimely bird dropping; in 'Bed Death,' it is a Malay waitress who casually takes a sip of orange juice from the narrator's glass. Ostlund's artful prose is playfully complex and illuminating, evocative and unsentimental, as in 'Upon the Completion of Baldness,' in which the narrator's girlfriend returns home from a trip completely bald. Remarks the narrator, 'the chilly desert air seemed to startle her as though, in that moment, she realized that there was a price to be paid for having no hair, and while I still said nothing, I was happy to see her suffer just a bit.' A specific disenchantment inhabits these stories — the disenchantment of the uncompromising romantic confronted with the evaporative nature of love. Each piece is sublime." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
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