A former lover becomes an uninvited houseguest in Ted and Marjory’s quiet abode, adversely affecting investigations into the history of the semicolon. A prosecutor must compulsively narrate his neighbour into ignominy. A market analyst’s visit to a stripper goes awry. Sentimental Exorcisms is a collection of tragicomic satire, latter-day Victorian collisions of Nabokov and Proust. The men in these long short stories have grand designs and petty fears, or modest designs and grand fears. Desires, scapegoats, idylls and obtrusive egos: the golden calves they can’t quite bear to kill.