This Is Not a Love Song


Product Details

Little Brown and Company
Publish Date
5.4 X 1.0 X 8.4 inches | 0.75 pounds
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About the Author

Brendan Mathews, a Fulbright Scholar to Ireland, has published stories in Glimmer Train, the Virginia Quarterly Review, and the Cincinnati Review, among other publications, and his fiction has twice appeared in The Best American Short Stories. He lives with his wife and four children in Lenox, Massachusetts, and teaches at Bard College at Simon's Rock.


"The emotional exiles of This Is Not a Love Song are as fierce in their desire to love as they are afraid that they're not built for it. Brendan Mathews is wonderful on how visceral and messy our longing for each other can be, as well as on the complexities of class, and worlds as varied as Sarajevo and the circus. These are funny and wrenching stories."--Jim Shepard, National Book Award finalist and author of The Book of Aron
"A collection of stylistically varied stories that highlight the tricky business of emotional investment...This book certainly is not a love song of the homely, sentimental sort. It's realism without cynicism, more of an extended aria for a range of intimacies and attachments that never run smoothly. There's some respite in its humor...Mathews is a restless stylist...An impressive collection from a resourceful writer."--Kirkus Reviews
"Mathews demonstrates in these stories an uncanny ability to inhabit characters with just a few well-crafted sentences. A master impersonator, Mathews employs a variety of voices, capturing the subtle nuances of dialect and pop lingo to explore with psychological acuity the doubt and insecurities that plague these varied individuals...Mathews excels at portraying the emotional pain felt by those without a clear place in the world and the universality of self-doubt. The versatility of literary techniques shows a writer in the process of sharpening his unique voice."--Booklist
"Variety, both in style and subject matter, is a hallmark of Mathews's quirky collection of 10 morally complex short stories...The tormented, misguided protagonists raise common human miseries to a higher power and unconsciously reveal the seedy motivations behind their actions. This is an eclectic, accomplished collection."--Publishers Weekly
"Each story is appealing and often fascinating...Featuring a variety of both subject and presentation, often in a humorous way, Mathews's collection is an excellent example of how entertaining today's short stories can be."--Winnipeg Free Press
"Lovely...Ambitious...A stirring exercise in world building...Mathews invests his characters with vitality and pathos...This is vibrant, risk-taking realism; a slim volume that bursts at its seams."--Taylor Antrim, Vogue