Show Them a Good Time

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Product Details

Bloomsbury Publishing
Publish Date
5.7 X 8.3 X 0.9 inches | 0.9 pounds

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About the Author

Nicole Flattery's work has been published in The Stinging Fly, The White Review, The Dublin Review, BBC Radio 4, The Irish Times and Winter Papers. She has also contributed a story to Faber's 2019 Anthology of New Irish Writing. A graduate of the master's program in Creative Writing at Trinity College, Dublin, she lives in Galway.


Show Them a Good Time is a master class in the short story--bold, irreverent and agonizingly funny. - Sally Rooney, Author of NORMAL PEOPLE and CONVERSATIONS WITH FRIENDS

Affecting and darkly funny . . . Posing biting questions about identity, sexuality and trauma, Show Them a Good Time is an offbeat yet moving look at contemporary womanhood. - TIME Magazine

Flattery puts across finely observed everyday details with an absurd sensibility and has a talent for one-liners. - The New Yorker

Flattery is a rising star . . . Her debut collection is a magnificently mordant work, full of delicious one-liners, perennially creeping menace, and hypnotically nihilistic depictions of cold-eyed young women trapped in strange, lonely, sometimes dystopian situations. . . . Reminiscent of the writing of Mary Gaitskill, Lorrie Moore, and Ottessa Moshfegh, Show Them a Good Time is a deft and dazzling work of pitch-black humor and deep, disquieting sorrow. - LitHub, Most Anticipated Books of 2020

Nicole Flattery's Show Them a Good Time was a fabulously entertaining record of what this gifted writer has been up to in the realm of short fiction--it's very funny stuff. The pages just glide by, but there's really difficult material and really knotty emotions thrumming along just beneath the blithe surface of things. - Kevin Barry, The Millions

When I moved to New York, I was overwhelmed by the sense that everyone I encountered was desperately holding themselves together. I could not escape the feeling that I, too, must be very careful, that if I were not, some crack in my skin would open and spill my insides onto the sidewalk. Accompanying this vigilance was an impulse toward rebellion, the sense that if only I were reckless, I could finally have some fun. I came to fancy myself somewhat deranged and decided to leave it at that. There are many such women in Nicole Flattery's outstanding collection Show Them a Good Time--women who are holding themselves together or flagrantly resisting the mandate to do so, in worlds both horrifying and hilarious. . . . [a] wry and devastating companion. - Paris Review

This Sally Rooney-approved debut collection features stories about sex, dating, identity, trauma, and women who refuse to stay put. - Bust

A seamless blend of reality and the surreal, Flattery's stories defy genre in an affecting yet unobtrusive manner. Readers should expect to be equal parts intrigued and unsettled. - Publishers Weekly

Flattery's prose--absurd, painfully funny, and bracingly original--slingshots the stories forward. These female characters never say what you're expecting, and their insights are always incisive. . . . Nervy, audacious stories in which women finally get to speak their minds. - Kirkus Reviews

A blisteringly original and wickedly funny collection of stories . . . Like the stories of Mary Gaitskill, Miranda July, Lorrie Moore, Joy Williams, and Ottessa Moshfegh, Show Them a Good Time is the work of a profoundly resonant and revelatory literary voice--at once spiky, humane, achingly hilarious--that is sure to echo through the literary culture for decades to come. - Paperback Paris

There's laughter in the dark and darkness in the laughter in these fabulously astute stories that are at once surreal and more real than reality. Nicole Flattery is so good. - Melissa Broder, author of THE PISCES

Startling, daring, and dazzlingly dark. - Colin Barrett, author of YOUNG SKINS

Demands repeated reading. These stories are very funny, and very sad, usually at the same time. Which, as Flattery shows us brilliantly, is the best time. - Jon McGregor author of RESERVOIR 13

Smart as a whip, unusual, and very, very funny, Flattery's distinctive prose is a real treat. - Claire-Louise Bennett, author of POND

Flattery's judgments crackle with cruel, clear sight . . . The book's epigraph comes from Lorrie Moore, who is an obvious influence on the high-wire style, those seductive insights armored with glittering wit against the pain they describe. Flattery writes with empathy, freedom and virtuosic technique: this debut announces the arrival of a brilliant talent. - Luke Brown, Financial Times

Excellent . . . Honoring the feelings and desires we're told to repress can be a way to free ourselves, to wake up, to live on. Nicole Flattery, in SHOW THEM A GOOD TIME, has created a compelling and fascinating first collection, at once vivid and ominous, hilarious and able to walk, unflinching, into the dark. - Washington Independent Review of Books

Highly addictive...Flattery's off-kilter voice blends chatty candour and hard-to-interpret allegory (think Diane Williams or Lorrie Moore), with the deadpan drollery and casually disturbing revelations heightened by her fondness for cutting any obvious connective tissue between sentences. - The Observer

Irish women writers are on fire, and Nicole Flattery is yet a further brilliant example ... Ten smart stories about dating, relationships and the absurdities of modern life. -

At its best, which is often, Flattery's prose has a thrilling relentlessness and rhythmical snap to it; it pummels and excites. - The Guardian

The book is a bit like drinking: refreshingly obliterative, realistically distorted. ... some of the most concrete aspects of the book are provided by the dialogue, which, as in Lorrie Moore or Deborah Eisenberg, often contains much of the stories' movement as it delivers funny little zaps to the main character's perspective. - London Review of Books

With loads of strangeness, humor, and really great lines, Flattery writes women's uncanny and true lives. - Booklist

A brilliant collection that investigates the roles women have been assigned and how they have made them their own. - Paperback Paris

Just when we think we know where Flattery is going she disorients us by changing tack and veering off-course into surreal territory. . . . The best tales blend personal pain and mordant wit, and are seductively offbeat and pleasingly on point. - Minneapolis Star Tribune