Synopses & Reviews
"Nine caustic stories by TeBordo find screeching ironies in rhetorical absurdities and writerly subversiveness. In 'Took and Lost,' the sense of violation felt by someone 'who lost something' in an unspecified theft (though the thief is described as 'a brilliant man... penning poems with his left hand and novels with his right, while beautiful and scandalous arias drip from his tongue') is played out in an elaborate street spectacle. 'The Champion of Forgetting' is a chilling chronicle of a brainwashed kid who has been kidnapped by a band of organ snatchers and is enlisted in their schemes; she proves masterly at sedation and surgery, to the reader's increasing horror. TeBordo relishes in tossing narrative wrenches into familiar setups, as with the second-person 'SS Attacks,' in which a bored 10th-grade narrator plans a school shooting to compensate for his older brother's cooler existence. Similarly, in 'Rules and Regulations,' the narrative transforms itself with vindictive fluidity from a dubious manual on child discipline to offering tips on caring for one's aging parent ('Enact your revenge with double-knotted bows and dirty linen'). Bizarre and biting, these tales leave a mark." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
After three novels, dynamic and masterful young writer Christian TeBordo, has finally collected his best short stories in The Awful Possibilities. A girl among kidney thieves masters the art of forgetting. A motivational speaker skins his best friend to impress his wife. A man outlines the rules and regulations for sadistic child-rearing. A teen in Brooklyn, Iowa, deals with the fallout of his brother's rise to hip hop fame. Populated with the people we've all heard whispering in hallways, mumbling in diners, shouting in the apartment next door, these brilliantly strange set pieces explode the boundaries of short fiction and locate the awe in the awful possibilities we could never have imagined.