The Ghost Variations: One Hundred Stories


Product Details

$27.00  $25.11
Pantheon Books
Publish Date
5.8 X 8.1 X 1.5 inches | 1.0 pounds

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About the Author

KEVIN BROCKMEIER is the author of the memoir A Few Seconds of Radiant Filmstrip; the novels The Illumination, The Brief History of the Dead, and The Truth About Celia; the story collections The Ghost Variations, Things That Fall from the Sky and The View from the Seventh Layer; and the children's novels City of Names and Grooves: A Kind of Mystery. His work has been translated into seventeen languages. He teaches frequently at the Iowa Writers' Workshop and lives in Little Rock, Arkansas, where he was raised.


"By turns scary, funny, touching, troubling and sad."
--USA Today

"Those who enjoyed Brockmeier's The Brief History of the Dead . . . will no doubt rejoice to read more poignant stories. . . . Ranges from funny to scary, checking all the boxes for those who love ghost stories in various forms and styles."

"Brockmeier's 100 extremely short ghost stories present a range in tone from unsettling to terrifying, and pack a fearful punch with an economy of language, even for readers primed to feel uneasy. . . . The tales themselves are gems: modern, haunted treasures to be discovered."

"Brockmeier's world has a perpetual hum of oddity, a numinous glow. He's a master of defamiliarizing the everyday, of what the Russians call "making strange." . . . Varied, inventive, uncanny, and playful: a gifted fabulist's cabinet of curiosities, his book-length memento mori."
--Kirkus Reviews

"Sonorous. . . . Brockmeier's luminous sentences and potent metaphors animate the phantasmagorical material. These eloquent dispatches show the writer's remarkable range."
--Publishers Weekly

"A teeming throng of stories in miniature in my favorite mode by one of my favorite writers. Brockmeier's ghosts range from the wistful to the terrifying--I could only wish that there were one hundred more."
--Kelly Link, author of Get in Trouble

"The Ghost Variations is pure Kevin Brockmeier--lush and playful and devastating and brilliant; a haunted hotel with a hundred rooms and a hundred doors, behind which lie a hundred perfect and terrifying dioramas. It's been ages since I've been this profoundly sated by a story collection, and I loved every minute of it."
--Carmen Maria Machado, author of Her Body and Other Parties

"The Ghost Variations is a haunted jukebox sparkling in the shadows, built to house a hundred voices, a hundred gorgeous songs. Each one is a masterpiece in miniature from one of our greatest writers, by turns funny and philosophical, chilling and warm. Like a palmful of smelling salts, these very short stories will wake you up. Only Kevin Brockmeier could write ghost stories that make a reader feel so alive."
--Karen Russell, author of Orange World and Other Stories

"In Kevin Brockmeier's The Ghost Variations, the familiar poetry of life gives way to uncanny wonder and startling discoveries, leaving the reader constantly unsettled, as if we found a room in a house where none had been before or woke in the night to a figure standing at the bottom of the bed. There might be a hundred stories in this collection, but there are a million reasons to love Brockmeier, one of literature's greatest living talents, who writes sentences like spells and who elegantly phases between the walls of literary and genre fiction."
--Benjamin Percy, author of Red Moon