Bright Shards of Someplace Else

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$25.95  $24.13
University of Georgia Press
Publish Date
5.6 X 8.5 X 1.0 inches | 0.8 pounds

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About the Author
MONICA McFAWN lives in Michigan and teaches writing at Grand Valley State University. Her fiction has appeared in the Georgia Review, Gettysburg Review, Web Conjunctions, Missouri Review and others. She is also the author of a hybrid chapbook, "A Catalogue of Rare Movements" and her plays and screenplays have had readings in Chicago and New York.
Winner of the Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction, McFawn's debut employs different narrative voices to create something singular. . . . McFawn approaches each story differently, not as an author imposing a single voice on disparate narratives but as an artist listening to her characters and finding the particular voice each one requires. . . . McFawn's empathy is astounding. . . . The rarest kind of literary debut--unpredictable and moving.-- "Kirkus Reviews (starred review)"
In eleven short stories, McFawn explores the contradictions of varied characters and their skewed perspectives toward one another and themselves. . . . McFawn's tales shine when characters, both resolute and misguided, brace for the flawed truths of their predicaments.--Leah Strauss "Booklist"
Bright Shards of Someplace Else is Monica McFawn's first collection of short stories, and it's already won this year's Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction. Perhaps it was her idiosyncratic voice, or her flair for distinctive characters that the judges recognized. Or maybe it was her empathetic power. Either way, McFawn has talent. In these eleven stories she manages to range from fantastic to satiric to poignant.--Jane Ciabattari "NPR Books"
Lovers of fiction will enjoy plunging headfirst into an offbeat collection of thought-provoking short stories. . . . The eleven stories are simultaneously quirky and achingly resonant. . . . Discover: A Flannery O'Connor Award-winning collection of short stories from an intriguing new voice in fiction.--Natalie Papailiou "Shelf Awareness"
Bursts of insight illuminate these carefully crafted tales; McFawn somehow wrenches the deepest humanity out of even the most unlikable characters.-- "Publishers Weekly"
Every good story makes the reader see the world in a different way, but McFawn helps us to see differently on every single page. She writes with an inventiveness and precision that startles, entertains, and convinces: of course that's what snow is like, or a dead horse, or an aggrieved father. Her stories are fresh and often wonderfully strange but also deeply insightful and emotionally complex. McFawn's effervescent writing helps us both to see anew and to recognize ourselves.--Caitlin Horrocks "This Is Not Your City"
What a strange and wondrous band of misfits, isolatos, geniuses, and obsessives of every stripe populates Monica McFawn's Bright Shards of Someplace Else. Her specializing in such types and their crazy experiments tells us that McFawn is a romantic, not of the love and nature type but of the Mary Shelley and Frankenstein type. Her protagonists choose trouble, even bad trouble, every time, because the alternative--which they see only too clearly--is the yawn of nothing at the far edge of the possible.--Jaimy Gordon, National Book Award Winner "Lord of Misrule"
With a watchmaker's precision, Monica McFawn crafts stories that tick and build slowly toward seemingly inevitable yet not-quite-arrived-at resolutions: a new supervisor puts off--again and again--firing a problem employee; the victim of a warehouse robbery beating crawls slowly toward a phone; two veterinarians make separate journeys to treat a gravely injured pony. Each scenario offers a Jamesian immersion into character consciousness that teems with delight and discovery and surprise. Like some newly discovered newt or loris that alters our view of an entire species, this book is strange and thrilling and very beautiful. I loved these stories.--Daniel Orozco "Orientation and other Stories"