My Father's Guitar and Other Imaginary Things


Product Details

Algonquin Books
Publish Date
5.4 X 0.8 X 8.1 inches | 0.5 pounds
BISAC Categories:

Earn by promoting books

Earn money by sharing your favorite books through our Affiliate program.

Become an affiliate

About the Author

Possessing “a gifted, committed imagination” (New York Times), Joseph Skibell is the author of three novels, A Blessing on the Moon, The English Disease, and A Curable Romantic, and a collection of true stories, My Father’s Guitar & Other Imaginary Things. He has received numerous awards, including a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and Story Magazine’s Short Short-Story Prize.


"[ Joseph Skibell is] a bit of a wise shaman sharing his gently amusing, offbeat life lessons. There's something unusually endearing and sweet about the 16 "true stories" in My Father's Guitar and Other Imaginary Things."

"It's easy to see why a writer blurbing this book describes [Skibell] as a 'literary Louis CK.' These shards of life have the feel of the standup performances you might here at New York's The Moth."--Toronto Star

"[Joseph Skibell] manages to find humor and self-effacing wit even while contemplating his own mortality and possibly defective memory. Skibell discovers that even when writing so-called 'true' stories, all lives are filled with imaginary things."--Atlanta Journal Constitution

"This book was like candy to me, the best candy, the kind you find yourself tiptoeing into the kitchen for all night long, trying to sneak one more piece before you're ordered to bed . . . The voice is so beguiling, the tone so sweet and hilarious, you quickly realize that you are in the hands of a master . . . Mr. I. B. Singer, meet Mr. Twain. This is a book to be prized in the way readers prize the work of Charles Portis." --James Magnuson, author of Famous Writers I Have Known

"Humorous and heartfelt . . . Whether the stories are mere snapshots or more extended, [Skibell] writes with a humor that flies under the radar until a joke pops up with a well-timed zing. The emotional core of the stories, though, revolves largely around Skibell's choppy relationship with his strict father. Skibell looks back on their differences with the emotional maturity that comes with time and distance, and his recollections, both funny and somber, resound with feeling."--Booklist

"Colorful and endearing, the book will appeal to readers who appreciate Augusten Burroughs-style, real-life anecdotal ponderings focused on familial ties and how life's eternal cycle of enchantment and disillusionment somehow sustains us. A memoir/essay collection of consistently heartfelt and enlightening morsels of humanity."--Kirkus Reviews

"When [Skibell] turns quietly to the spaces we occupy in real life . . . a wink of illusion and philosophy can be expected . . . Skibell writes with the insight of a philosopher, conveying his ideas with the beauty of a craftsman."

"Stories? These wise and humane offerings aren't stories; they're musical notes, from a master composer. And they swirl and swell and come together and echo one another to create a concerto of love and sadness and warmth and humor that will linger in your memory long after reading, as the best music always does." --Jeremy Dauber, author of The Worlds of Sholem Aleichem

"Joseph Skibell's immense skills as an imaginative and lyrical novelist serve him well in these touching essays about memory and mysticism. You'll laugh and also feel a little bit achy as you hear the voice of an extraordinary storyteller and a wise and witty friend." --Heidi Durrow, author of The Girl Who Fell from the Sky

"The brilliant novelist detours from fiction with this collection of 16 essays . . . deeply moving, slyly funny meditations on the limits of memory, the meaning of ghosts, and the value of stories."--Atlanta Magazine