Synopses & Reviews
Featuring ten stunning stories, Scar Vegas grips the reader with breathtaking, gut-wrenching, and relentlessly entertaining narratives set on a bedrock of piercing political consciousness and clear-eyed reportorial vision. From a teenage anarchist to a Marine Corps general, Tom Paine's passionate characters make the kind of heartbreaking decisions that crackle with moral-and spiritual-consequences. And with each story Paine displays his mastery of language and nuance, flowing effortlessly from drug culture dialect to the clipped English of a Romanian émigré. With stinging wit and unmatched skill, Tom Paine will "startle you with the muscular vigor of his prose and the ability to tell a tale that sucks you in and won't let go from start to finish" (Newsday).
"The prose is unostentatiously gorgeous. The seductive cadence of the language, the velocity of the narrative, the vividness of the physical universe, the stunning economy of emotions-all of these writerly qualities converge in Tom Paine's undeniably powerful work."-Bob Shacochis, author of the immaculate invasion
"Visionary, nightmarish, irresistible . . . The range and scope of these ten haunting and often morally confronting tales is extraordinary, sometimes mind-boggling."-Frederick Reiken, author of the odd sea
"Arresting...extraordinary variety and narrative verve. In each of [the stories], the author immediately establishes an extreme situation that rivets your attention.-the New York Times
"A striking panoply of voices and settings that nevertheless emanate from a singular, daring conscience."-Publishers Weekly (starred review) "Eloquent, comical and sometimes heartbreaking."-San Francisco Chronicle
With explosive narrative skill, Tom Paine pulls you into the worlds of a cross-dressing Army general, a confused lowlife being offered an incredible opportunity, and a despairing man whose mother hates him for no reason. Paine's stories feature exotic locales and take you on adventures you never imagined. His work has been published in the New Yorker, Playboy, Harper's, and Zoetrope and has received O. Henry awards, prizes from the Boston Review and Pushcart, and a National Magazine award, and has been optioned for film productions. Like Ernest Hemingway, Robert Stone, Richard Ford, and Russell Banks, Tom Paine grips the reader with his passion and vision.
About the Author
Tom Paine is a graduate of Princeton and the Columbia M.F.A. program. His book of short stories, Scar Vegas, was a finalist for the Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award and a New York Times Notable Book of the Year.
Table of Contents
Will you say something, Monsieur Eliot? -- General Markman's last stand -- Scar Vegas -- Unapproved minutes of the Carthage, Vermont Zoning Board of Adjustment -- Spoon children -- The hotel on Monkey Forest Road -- Ceausescu's cat -- The mayor of St. John -- A predictable nightmare on the eve of the stock market breaking 6,000 -- The battle of Khafji.