Lucky Alan and Other Stories

Lucky Alan and Other Stories Jonathan Lethem stretches new literary muscles in this scintillating new collection of stories Some of these tales such as Pending Vegan which wonderfully captures a parental ache and anguish during

  • Title: Lucky Alan and Other Stories
  • Author: Jonathan Lethem
  • ISBN: 9780385539814
  • Page: 317
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Jonathan Lethem stretches new literary muscles in this scintillating new collection of stories Some of these tales such as Pending Vegan, which wonderfully captures a parental ache and anguish during a family visit to an aquatic theme park are, in Lethem s words, obedient at least outwardly to realism Others, like The Dreaming Jaw, The Salivating Ear which deftJonathan Lethem stretches new literary muscles in this scintillating new collection of stories Some of these tales such as Pending Vegan, which wonderfully captures a parental ache and anguish during a family visit to an aquatic theme park are, in Lethem s words, obedient at least outwardly to realism Others, like The Dreaming Jaw, The Salivating Ear which deftly and hilariously captures the solipsism of blog culture, feature the uncanny and surreal elements that still sometimes erupt in my short stories The tension between these two approaches, and the way they inform each other, increase the reader s surprise and delight as one realizes how cleverly Lethem is playing with form Devoted fans of Lethem will recognize familiar themes and tropes the anxiety of influence pushed to reduction ad absurdum in The King of Sentences a hapless outsider trying to summon up bravado in The Porn Critic characters from the comics stranded on a desert island the necessity and the impossibility of action against authority in Procedure in Plain Air As always, Lethem s work, humor, and poignancy work in harmony people strive desperately for connection through words and often misdirect deeds and the sentences are glorious.

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      Jonathan Lethem

    About Author

    1. Jonathan Allen Lethem born February 19, 1964 is an American novelist, essayist and short story writer.His first novel, Gun, with Occasional Music, a genre work that mixed elements of science fiction and detective fiction, was published in 1994 It was followed by three science fiction novels In 1999, Lethem published Motherless Brooklyn, a National Book Critics Circle Award winning novel that achieved mainstream success In 2003, he published The Fortress of Solitude, which became a New York Times Best Seller In 2005, he received a MacArthur Fellowship

    One thought on “Lucky Alan and Other Stories

    1. Lucky Alan And Other Stories is a collection of short stories by author Jonathan Lethem If you are a fan of his and if you ve read him at all, I think you must be then this is an experience you won t want to miss.Every story is terrific unusual in a story collection Although I am primarily a novel reader, I also love short stories A well crafted short story can create a complete world and is an absorbing experience that can be grasped at a single sitting These short stories deliver that and .One [...]


    2. I d rate this 2.5 stars.Full disclosure I received an advance copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased review.For someone who once unequivocally refused to read short stories because I convinced myself that rather than invest myself in characters and plots that end quickly, my time was better spent reading full length novels such foolishness , I ve than made up for lost time over the last few years And as any fan of the short story knows, the richness of characterization and [...]


    3. I got an advanced reader copy from Edelweiss, with the understanding that I would provide an honest review.I wasn t sure how I d like Lethem in short story form, despite loving his novels although I m a bit behind, I don t think I ve read the last two I really enjoyed these He plays with the words to a greater extent than I remember him doing in the longer novels, and it s almost tangible, like he s behind the pages cackling, waiting for the reader to say, I see what you did there Favorite stori [...]


    4. The general rule of thumb is that short stories have to end with a punchline Something fundamental must occur in the last few sentences, something that makes the whole story suddenly make sense, or challenges the fundamental assumptions the reader had when they started, or changes the reader Something needs to _happen_ at the end to make the story, short though it was, worthwhile.And, well, that just doesn t happen in this book Some of the stories have a small revelation near the end, but nothin [...]


    5. An eclectic and wildly uneven short story collection from the author of Motherless Brooklyn and The Fortress of Solitude My favorite stories are The King of Sentences, a very funny self parody of literary preciousness, the brutal Shirley Jackson esque Procedure in Plain Air, and Pending Vegan, a story of everyday guilt and discomfort that I related to very strongly.The rest of the stories are a mix of quirky, charming New York City character sketches Lucky Alan, The Porn Critic and truly insuffe [...]


    6. I started this immediately after I read Mark Dunn s rich in letters fable Ella Minnow Pea I also have a habit of reading short stories in alphabetical order This meant starting the book with The Dreaming Jaw, the Salivating Ear It felt, in the initial stages of the story, eerily, like I never left Nollop the crusty seaside blog was written in similar overly formal, archaic and arch fashion as Ella It changed once the story progressed, but I was hooked There was an added advantage this was the we [...]


    7. I have only ever loved one short story collection, and it was Salinger s Nine Stories Usually with short story collections, just when you get interested in a story it ends, and then you have to start over and get interested in the next Also, I generally find the stories hit and miss With this collection, I couldn t wait to see what Lethem would do next With the exception of Lucky Alan, which I thought was weak, every story was better than the last.There were some very creative ideas, tons of soc [...]


    8. This is an amazing collection of short stories from a literary master Whether the story is realistic, rooted in mysticism, or found somewhere in between, each one is unique and thought provoking Jonathan Lethem has a way of making every story he tells stick with you long after you ve finished turning the pages.


    9. Master craftsman at work Lovely turn of phrases and extended metaphors Of the 9 stories only 1 I really didn t get on with and another so so, but loved Pending Vegan and The Porn Critic.


    10. This short story collection is a mixed bag Yes the sentences are dazzling But this time the stories left me feeling awfully cold, distant and oddly unmemorable.


    11. themaineedge buzz keepJonathan Lethem has long been gleefully subverting the tropes of genre fiction and using them to amplify the impact of his own writing His expert folding of the weird into the everyday makes his work a reading experience like no other.His latest story collection is Lucky Alan And Other Stories an assemblage that duly captures the anarchic spirit of Lethem s work While these nine stories aren t perfect, their imperfections are a very real part of the book s overarching succe [...]


    12. Lucky Alan by Jonathan Lethem is a collection of nine short stories I ve read a few books by Lethem and this collection is a winner.His style ranges from realistic to a sort of magical realism A man weaning himself off anti depressants takes his family to Sea World Another man writes critiques of porn, then feels awkward bringing guest over to his house with it s piles of video tapes A family buys a house and leaves one room empty, but why A group of back page cartoon characters find themselves [...]


    13. This feels like a collection mandated by the publisher At least one of these stories written as a series of blog posts descending the number line, is six years old, and it hasn t aged all that well Lethem is hit or miss both here and in general with his formal experiments, but I appreciate that he finds new forms to play with Still, the best story here is his least experimental and most realistic, the story of a father recently off his anti depressants taking his family to Sea World, seeing only [...]


    14. Giving this 4 stars might be slightly generous there are indeed a couple of really fantastic stories in this collection, but there are also several that didn t do a whole lot for me Still, the ones I liked really hit home with me I liked The Dreaming Jaw, The Salivating Ear so much that I immediately read it again Procedure in Plain Air and The King of Sentences were also favorites.Lethem s short fiction is often really weird, but that s what I love about it Definitely recommended to fans of his [...]


    15. Of course with this title, I had to read it Seeing him read a story at my local book store was icing on the cake I m a fan of Jonathan Lethem s novels, but his short stories are excellent He never wastes a word His stories move seamlessly between realistic sort of and surrealistic definitely but always leave with questions than answers which is a sign of a story that will stick with me for a long time Looking forward to reading his next novel which had a short story excerpt in the New Yorker.



    16. Eclectic collection of 9 stories by Jonathan Lethem The obsessively, literary, stalker noir The King of Sentences was my hands down favorite I also have a soft spot for the oddities found in Procedure in Plain Air and Their Back Pages Though the lines that I want to transcribe for you come from Pending Vegan Perhaps I should let you discover them for yourself And don t feel bad if you decide to skip over The Dreaming Jaw, The Salivating Ear Oh completing this book, this pushes Jonathan Lethem ab [...]


    17. Dimenticato Lethem non ha il fiato necessario per i racconti, intenso e raccolto, un animale da romanzo Questa raccolta una tale delusione rispetto alle precedenti letture di Lethem Il giardino dei dissidenti , un lavoro di altissima caratura tra architettura, civilt , razze e pregiudizi e La fortezza della solitudine , immersione totale in un mondo alieno che diventa nostro, che decido subito lo dimentico, non l ho mai letto, se l ho letto, ero distratta, soprattutto, era distratto lui


    18. The first story had me hookedbut it was all downhill from there This is of a collection of stories yelling look how witty, experimental, and existential I am , as opposed to a series of stories that make me want to delve further into the book I m sure this might hit some reader s sweet spotbut it totally sail past my own.


    19. There were a few good ones in here the title story, Traveler Home, and, especially, The Porn Critic But the rest you can skip sketches than stories, skeletal outlines with very little connective tissue A long way from Men and Cartoons.


    20. Lethem s stories are fantastic, blurring the edges of fantasy and reality as only he can Philip K Dick for a new generation.





    21. Jonathan Lethem s career in writing has garnered him much praise for his ingenuity and his handling of both the novel and short form More than anything, his new collection, Lucky Alan, is an example of his diversity as a storyteller, or rather of his refusal to adhere to rules and structure With a Salingerian total of nine stories, the new book charts a rambling journey across surrealism and pop culture, through sharp observations and comic absurdity alike Its diversity is both its strength and [...]


    22. The only thing I remember about Jonathan Lethem s first collection of short stories The Wall of the Eye, The Wall of the Sky is that he really liked abrupt endings Lucky Alan is no different Sometimes the endings work, and sometimes the stories just feel unfinished That s probably why this collection has so many one star ratings people assume that Lethem is trying to palm off his fragments on an unsuspecting public, and they react with vehemence.Thing is, I think the one star critics are being o [...]


    23. The tales assembled in Jonathan Lethem s new collection of short stories Lucky Alan and Other Stories are clever and absurd They are humorous and imaginative They are rewarding and at times frustrating.Lethem has achieved critical and mainstream success with his novels Motherless Brooklyn fantastic read this now if you have not yet done so and The Fortress of Solitude, and the characteristics that made these works so successful appear in Lucky Alan and Other Stories There is a richness and dark [...]


    24. Lucky Alan and Other Stories is a collection of short stories in which Lethem explores the mundane and their often times self defeating pursuits Although all the stories seem to share the same tone and I suppose you can say theme tragically mundane lives of people who inhabit Lethem s world they are all slightly different in structure Their mere presence on the page can be intrigue the reader, even if they never really read the words written Each story has an ending that will confuse the reader [...]


    25. Clever, But No CigarThis short book contains nine stories of rather under 20 pages each All are clever, and will probably delight anyone for whom an off beat surreal sense of the absurd is the main criterion there is a distinct whiff of Kafka But there is little here for those of us to look to stories for a concise expression of the human condition The one piece that came close to this was the last, about a man in a midlife crisis who goes with his wife and young twin daughters to SeaWorld the t [...]


    26. I do consider myself very lucky certainly much luckier than my namesake in Jonathan Lethem s collection Lucky Alan Lethem s Alan doesn t even show up in person until halfway through the story that bears his name, and what happens to him after that Fugeddaboudit Suffice it to say that the title bears than a little ironic resonance.The other stories in this collection encompass obsessive fans, surreal street workers, comic strip characters stranded on a deserted island, and a guy who writes revie [...]


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