One of Us

Winner of the G. S. Sharat Chandra Prize for Short Fiction, selected by Amina Gautier The story “Liberté” from One of Us is included in Best American Short Stories 2020, edited by Curtis Sittenfield. Whether probing the aches and bafflements of suburban adolescence or bringing the horrors of history to life, Scott Nadelson’s stories are always finely tuned and full of surprises. Small moments lead to big questions about what it means to be a man, an American, a Jew, or—inevitably—all of these things at … Learn more

Odd Ducks

Pat Lawson’s fine new collection, Odd Ducks, reminds us that engaging stories can be found anywhere, including the modest households of both Kansas Cities. Among her subjects are adolescents bemused by the odd rituals of their parents; school librarians beguiled by a charming student; and Latino kindergartners who show more imagination than their teachers. Then there are the well-meaning neighbors who learn the singular lesson—running like a leitmotif through the collection—that no good deed goes unpunished. A Lawson story has three stellar traits: a Chekhovian … Learn more

Postcards from the Gerund State

Postcards from the Gerund State follows a group of women academics, mostly in the visual and literary arts, as they adjust to the hilarious surprises of life at Birnbrau, a fictional women’s college in Georgia with its own characteristic dysfunctions. In the culminating novella that concludes the collection, the group attend a residency at a Wyoming artist colony where for a full month, they cannot avoid or escape each other, as much as they might wish for it. Kirkus Reviews calls the book “an empathetic, … Learn more

Stone Skimmers

Winner of the G. S. Sharat Chandra Prize for Short Fiction, selected by Stewart O’Nan Stone Skimmers opens in pristine, affluent Old Stonington, Connecticut, where a peculiar fifteen-year-old girl swims for hours each day across the town reservoir, lost to her own obsessions. The popular crowd spies from shore, mocking her strangeness, cozy in their camaraderie, until one betrays the group by befriending the outsider. The remaining six stories follow this splintered clique into adulthoods rife with isolation and loss, exploring the lives of those who … Learn more

When We Were Someone Else

Winner of the G. S. Sharat Chandra Prize for Short Fiction , selected by Hilma Wolitzer Longlisted for the Chautauqua Prize The protagonists in When We Were Someone Else mostly feel boxed into unlivable spaces, and wonder whether disappointment is the cart or the horse in terms of where they’ve found themselves. And even as they imagine the relief of being seen with some clarity—and then, if not cherished, at least appreciated—they’re also reminded of the pain they’ve inflicted upon others. These slyly linked stories … Learn more

The Owl That Carries Us Away

Winner of the G. S. Sharat Chandra Prize for Short Fiction, selected by Billy Lombardo Bronze winner, Independent Publisher Award (IPPY) Finalist, Foreword Reviews Book of the Year Award in short stories Ramspeck’s debut collection abounds with flawed families, tense confirmations, and unlikely moments of grace… These precise and resonant stories chronicle humble lives and unspoken traumas, making for a subtle and moving reading experience Kirkus Reviews ­Excellent reading for those who value meditative, beautiful storytelling. (starred review) Barbara HoffertLibrary Journal One is tempted, in … Learn more

Things We Do When
No One Is Watching

One Gerard character says that “childhood is a dangerous country, and not all of us make it out alive”—a powerful theme that runs through these beautifully crafted, moving stories. Those who do make it out alive are left trying to make sense of the memories, those defining times when one stands at the cusp of childhood comfort and the reality of violence and death and sheer bad luck. Likewise there are moments when wishes come true and one glimpses something pure and good. These characters … Learn more