Star Wars Sale
 
 

Special Offers see all

Enter to WIN!

Weekly drawing for $100 credit. Subscribe to PowellsBooks.news for a chance to win.
Privacy Policy

More at Powell's


Recently Viewed clear list


The Powell's Playlist | June 18, 2014

Daniel H. Wilson: IMG The Powell’s Playlist: Daniel H. Wilson



Like many writers, I'm constantly haunting coffee shops with a laptop out and my headphones on. I listen to a lot of music while I write, and songs... Continue »
  1. $18.87 Sale Hardcover add to wish list

    Robogenesis

    Daniel H. Wilson 9780385537094

spacer
Qualifying orders ship free.
$9.50
List price: $15.00
Used Trade Paper
Ships in 1 to 3 days
Add to Wishlist
Qty Store Section
4 Hawthorne Literature- A to Z

This title in other editions

No One Belongs Here More Than You: Stories

by

No One Belongs Here More Than You: Stories Cover

 

 

Excerpt

This Person

Someone is getting excited. Somebody somewhere is shaking with excitement because something tremendous is about to happen to this person. This person has dressed for the occasion. This person has hoped and dreamed and now it is really happening and this person can hardly believe it. But believing is not an issue here, the time for faith and fantasy is over, it is really really happening. It involves stepping forward and bowing. Possibly there is some kneeling, such as when one is knighted. One is almost never knighted. But this person may kneel and receive a tap on each shoulder with a sword. Or, more likely, this person will be in a car or a store or under a vinyl canopy when it happens. Or online or on the phone. It could be an e-mail re: your knighthood. Or a long, laughing, rambling phone message in which every person this person has ever known is talking on a speakerphone and they are all saying,You have passed the test, it was all just a test, we were only kidding, real life is so much better than that. This person is laughing out loud with relief and playing the message back to get the address of the place where every person this person has ever known is waiting to hug this person and bring her into the fold of life. It is really exciting, and it's not just a dream, it's real.

They are all waiting by a picnic table in a park this person has driven past many times before. There they are, it's everyone. There are balloons taped to the benches, and the girl this person used to stand next to at the bus stop is waving a streamer. Everyone is smiling. For a moment this person is almost creeped out by the scene, but it would be so like this person to become depressed on the happiest day ever, and so this person bucks up and joins the crowd.

Teachers of subjects that this person wasn't even good at are kissing this person and renouncing the very subjects they taught. Math teachers are saying that math was just a funny way of saying "I love you." But now they are simply saying it, I love you, and the chemistry and PE teachers are also saying it and this person can tell they really mean it. It's totally amazing. Certain jerks and idiots and assholes appear from time to time, and it is as if they have had plastic surgery, their faces are disfigured with love. The handsome assholes are plain and kind, and the ugly jerks are sweet, and they are folding this person's sweater and putting it somewhere where it won't get dirty. Best of all, every person this person has ever loved is there. Even the ones who got away. They hold this person's hand and tell this person how hard it was to pretend to get mad and drive off and never come back. This person almost can't believe it, it seemed so real, this person's heart was broken and has healed and now this person hardly knows what to think. This person is almost mad. But everyone soothes this person. Everyone explains that it was absolutely necessary to know how strong this person was. Oh, look, there's the doctor who prescribed the medicine that made this person temporarily blind. And the man who paid this person two thousand dollars to have sex with him three times when this person was very broke. Both of these men are in attendance, they seem to know each other. They both have little medals that they are pinning on this person; they are badges of great honor and strength. The badges sparkle in the sunlight, and everyone cheers.

This person suddenly feels the need to check her post office box. It is an old habit, and even if everything is going to be terrific from now on, this person still wants mail. This person says she will be right back and everyone this person has ever known says, Fine, take your time. This person gets in her car and drives to the post office and opens the box and there is nothing. Even though it is a Tuesday, which is famously a good day for mail. This person is so disappointed, this person gets back in the car and, having completely forgotten about the picnic, drives home and checks the voice mail and there are no new messages, just the old one about "passing the test" and "life being better." There are no e-mails, either, probably because everyone is at the picnic. This person can't seem to go back to the picnic. This person realizes that staying home means blowing off everyone this person has ever known. But the desire to stay in is very strong. This person wants to run a bath and then read in bed.

In the bathtub this person pushes the bubbles around and listens to the sound of millions of them popping at once. It almost makes one smooth sound instead of many tiny sounds. This person's breasts barely jut out of the water. This person pushes the bubbles onto the breasts and makes weird shapes with the foam. By now everyone must have realized that this person is not coming back to the picnic. Everyone was wrong; this person is not who they thought this person was. This person plunges underwater and moves her hair around like a sea anemone. This person can stay underwater for an impressively long time but only in a bathtub. This person wonders if there will ever be an Olympic contest for holding your breath under bathwater. If there were such a contest, this person would surely win it. An Olympic medal might redeem this person in the eyes of everyone this person has ever known. But no such contest exists, so there will be no redeeming. This person mourns the fact that she has ruined her one chance to be loved by everyone; as this person climbs into bed, the weight of this tragedy seems to bear down upon this person's chest. And it is a comforting weight, almost human in heft. This person sighs. This person's eyes begin to close, this person sleeps.

Copyright © 2007 by Miranda July

What Our Readers Are Saying

Add a comment for a chance to win!
Average customer rating based on 5 comments:

Lochary, January 10, 2013 (view all comments by Lochary)
Very odd and metaphysical like anything Miranda July puts out, but specially and intimately great. She seems to capture perfectly random and brillant thoughts and daydreams from different archetypes that otherwise would go unnoticed. If you ever seen her perfomances or heard her audio works, this is that and more.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
RAF Hedgehog, January 1, 2013 (view all comments by RAF Hedgehog)
Miranda July is our best living author after David Foster Wallace's untimely suicide, and though she's written other books, this collection of short stories remains my favorite. She has an incredible gift for language, with lines like “I laughed and said, Life is easy. What I meant was, Life is easy with you here, and when you leave, it will be hard again.” She's a writer of subtlety and power, and well worth your time.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
fischhi, January 14, 2010 (view all comments by fischhi)
In No One Belongs Here More Than You, Miranda July gives language to those moments of joy, quiet grief, and awe hidden in the ordinary.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 3 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 5 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780743299411
Author:
July, Miranda
Publisher:
Scribner Book Company
Author:
Beach, Lou
Subject:
Short Stories (single author)
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Stories (single author)
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Edition Number:
Reprint ed.
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
May 6, 2008
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
10 full-color plates
Pages:
176
Dimensions:
8 x 5.25 in

Other books you might like

  1. After Dark
    Used Hardcover $12.00
  2. The Guy Not Taken: Stories Used Trade Paper $3.95
  3. The Secret Lives of People in Love:...
    Used Trade Paper $6.95
  4. Nice Big American Baby: Stories Used Trade Paper $4.95
  5. Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao Used Trade Paper $7.50
  6. The Collected Stories of Amy Hempel
    Used Hardcover $8.95

Related Subjects


Featured Titles » Staff Picks
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General Medicine
History and Social Science » Military » General History
Metaphysics » Magic Witchcraft and Paganism
Religion » Comparative Religion » General

No One Belongs Here More Than You: Stories Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.50 In Stock
Product details 176 pages Scribner - English 9780743299411 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

Is there a creative project Miranda July can't conquer? If you've jealously posed this question before reading her fiction, stay away from the new collection. No One Belongs Here More Than You will only embitter you further. It's not enough for July to write, direct, and star in a prize-winning film at Cannes and Sundance. Her recordings for Kill Rock Stars, stage performances, web projects... Maybe she's a terrible abstract painter, but I doubt it. Imagine sixteen tight, breathtaking doses of Me and You and Everyone We Know, the same deep compassion, anxious humor, and aching vulnerability. Cross Aimee Bender and Amy Hempel, and then cross you fingers July makes time for more fiction soon.

"Staff Pick" by ,

July's short stories perfectly embody the wonder that is Portland, that is the Pacific Northwest. At once humorous as well as speculative, in this all-too-short collection, July is a rollercoaster of emotions. Reading it is like listening to the saddest Morrissey song on repeat while watching old Chris Farley clips. In one word, perfection.

"Review" by , "These delightful stories do that essential-but-rare story thing: they surprise. They skip past the quotidian, the merely real, to the essential, and do so with a spirit of tenderness and wonder that is wholly unique. They are (let me coin a phrase) July-esque, which is to say: infused with wonder at the things of the world."
"Review" by , "These stories are incredibly charming, beautifully written, frequently laugh-out-loud funny, and even, a dozen or so times, profound. Miranda July is a very real writer, and has one of the most original voices to appear in fiction in many years. Fans of Lorrie Moore should rub this book all over themselves — she's got that perfect balance of humor and pathos. There has been no more enjoyable and promising a debut collection in many a moon."
"Review" by , "Miranda July's is a beautiful, odd, original voice — seductive, sometimes erotic, and a little creepy, too."
"Review" by , "A woman gives swimming lessons in her kitchen — of course! Miranda July can make anything seem normal in these truly original stories. She has first-rate comic timing and a generous view of the human condition. Maybe best of all, there's joy here, too, often where you would not expect to find it."
"Review" by , "An accomplished debut collection of 16 stories, simultaneously bizarre and achingly familiar....A smart, original collection."
"Review" by , "July's collection of stories is a gem of unconventional storytelling. Comparisons to Lorrie Moore only get the potential reader halfway there; one must add Karen Finley's meditations and Douglas Coupland's painful self-exploration."
"Review" by , "Some of these couplings are startling, but others are cliches that drag down an otherwise witty and unusual book. The best moments here are small...and as they accrue the collection becomes an exhilarating read."
"Review" by , "[T]he book is full of wistful, wonderful observations about the limits of connection, about the hopes and disappointments of intimacy....July has created a voice that is alive and winning and very funny as she struggles to answer their questions and, ultimately, ours."
"Review" by , "The problem with Ms. July's writing, of course, is that even her metaphors seem to indicate something about youth culture....Her voice is positioned as generational, and in fiction that can be distracting."
"Review" by , "July is a strange and compelling new voice; her worlds feel real and surreal and desperately sad and filled with what one character calls 'secret joy,' at the same time. And while there is often a frustrating air of utter self-absorption about many of these disconnected souls, their hearts are powerfully human."
"Review" by , "July's is a distinctive aesthetic that, misread, can seem flip, pointless and cold....These stories are marked by an imagination that conjures the incredible, renders it mundane (often through sex) and captures an emptiness of modern spirit."
"Review" by , "If the territory in No One Belongs Here More Than You seems familiar, her treatment of it is different, less coolly twee."
"Review" by , "This volume isn't a comfortable place to be....A handful of these stories are sweet and revealing, although in many cases the attempt to create 'art' is too self-conscious, and the effort comes off as pointlessly strange."
"Synopsis" by , Screenwriter, director, and star of the acclaimed film Me and You and Everyone We Know, Miranda July brings her extraordinary talents to the page in a startling, sexy, and tender collection.
spacer
spacer
  • back to top
Follow us on...




Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.