Synopses & Reviews
, Tom Perrotta's first true collection, features ten stories — some sharp and funny, some mordant and surprising, and a few intense and disturbing. Whether hes dropping into the lives of two teachers — and their love lost and found — in “Nine Inches”, documenting the unraveling of a dad at a Little League game in “The Smile on Happy Chang's Face”, or gently marking the points of connection between an old woman and a benched high school football player in “Senior Season”, Perrotta writes with a sure sense of his characters and their secret longings.
Nine Inches contains an elegant collection of short fiction: stories that are as assured in their depictions of characters young and old, established and unsure, as any written today.
"Told with wit and grace, Perrotta's (The Leftovers) story collection lays bare the shifting relationships we all suffer and seldom comprehend, presenting characters who are ambushed by the hidden intentions of people they thought they knew. After discovering his wife's infidelities, one man wonders how 'he could have spent so much time on earth... and understood almost nothing about his life and the lives of the people he was closest to.' This lament could be echoed by many of the characters in these stories: the lonely grandmother, the disappointed father, the pizza delivery boy who didn't get into college. A former high school football player, suffering a severe concussion, remarks, 'One day you feel pretty decent, the next you're a wreck.' A doctor separated from his wife observes that 'good things turned to shit all the time, and you couldn't always see it coming.' Yet the stories aren't all bleak; Perrotta allows some of his characters to find redemption, such as a mother who chaperones a high school party and forges an unexpected friendship with a cop who once pointlessly hassled her and her daughter: 'For a little while, it's like the world just stops, and there's nothing you can do but sit tight and wait for it to start moving again.' (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
is, simply put, the best Twilight Zone
episode you never saw.”
—Stephen King, New York Times Book Review
"His most mature, absorbing novel, one that confirms his development from a funnyman to a daring chronicler of our most profound anxieties and human desires."
—Washington Post on The Leftovers
"At once suspenseful, ruefully funny, and ultimately generous. What is Perrotta but an American Chekhov whose characters even at their most ridiculous seem blessed and enbled by a luminous human aura?" —New York Times Book Review on Little Children "More powerful than any coming-of-age novel." —Washington Post on Bad Haircut
Tom Perrotta is…
“An American Chekhov.”—The New York Times Book Review
"The Steinbeck of suburbia.”—Time
“A writer at his rock-star best.”—Entertainment Weekly
“Equally gifted at drawing peoples emotional maps…and creating sidesplitting scenes.”—People
“An astute student of twenty-first-century suburban life.”—USA Today “That rare combination: a satirist with heart…Those who havent curled up on the couch with this writers books are missing a very great pleasure.”—The Seattle Times
"The acclaimed novelist displays perfect tonal pitch in this story collection, as nobody explores the darker sides of suburbia with a lighter touch."--Kirkus Reviews (starred)
"Told with wit and grace, Perrotta's story collection lays bare the shifting relationships we all suffer and seldom comprehend, presenting characters who are ambushed by the hidden intentions of people they thought they knew."--Publishers Weekly
About the Author
Tom Perrotta is the author of eight books, most recently The Leftovers. Two of his novels — Election and Little Children — have been made into acclaimed and award-winning movies. Perrotta grew up in New Jersey and now lives outside of Boston, Massachusetts.