This book essentially launched the memoir craze that has been going strong ever since. The story is pretty grim: teen-aged Wolff moves with his divorced mother from Florida to Utah to Washington State to escape her violent boyfriend. When she remarries, Wolff finds himself in a bitter battle of wills with his abusive stepfather, a contest in which the two prove to be more evenly matched than might have been supposed.
"Beautiful, unsentimental memoir of youth"
Three friends are leaving the suburbs of Spokane on a hunting trip. Kenny is the prankster, harsh and mean. Frank is laid-back and full of idealism. Tub is overweight, sensitive, and the brunt of everyone's jokes. Searching for tracks in the snow, the trio has little luck until they spot a set of deer prints heading into a nearby farm. Kenny, desperate for a token of their difficult journey, insists that they ask the farmer's permission to hunt on his land.
Anders is an angry, cynical man. A book critic known for his scathing reviews, he finds any excuse to dismiss, belittle, or insult. This afternoon is no more agitating than the next. Angers finds himself in a long line at the bank, waiting to reach a teller. Even after two men - wearing masks and carrying guns - take control of the building, Anders is unfazed. It's this behavior that lands him with a pistol against his stomach and a man screamingin his face. And when the bank robber, indignant over Anders' behavior, shoots the book critic in the head, his mind floats through the memories of his life, settling on one particular event....
Here is a tapestry of stories about the complex and unique relationship that exists between brothers. In this book, some of our finest authors take an unvarnished look at how brothers admire and admonish, revere and revile, connect and compete, love and war with each other. With hearts and minds wide open, and in some cases, with laugh-out-loud humor, the writers tackle a topic that is as old as the Bible and yet has been, heretofore, overlooked. Contributors range in age from 24 to 84, and their stories from comic to tragic.
Wolff here returns with fresh revelations - about biding one's time, or experiencing first love, or burying one's mother - that come to a variety of characters in circumstances at once everyday and extraordinary. A retired Marine enrolls in college while her son trains for Iraq. A lawyer takes a difficult deposition. An American in Rome indulges the Gypsy who's picked his pocket.
James is a liar. He enjoys inventing fantastic stories about his family, particularly his mother. Margaret is orderly, stubborn, and judgmental - a woman who throws rocks at hungry bears and never misses four o'clock Mass. She loves her children but has always struggled with James. Like his deceased father, he's fascinated by the darker aspects of life - car crashes, illness, and crime. Dr. Murphy, the family physician who dabbles in psychiatry, believes that James' lying is harmless. His mother, however, thinks otherwise.
A classic tale of brotherly love and rivalry from short story master Tobias Wolff. Pete has always been successful. Happily married with two daughters, he lives a comfortable life in Santa Cruz. Pete is a practical, hardworking man and he enjoys life's monetary pleasures. His younger brother, Donald, is a gaunt, troubled man. Unmarried and without children, Donald earns what little money he has by occasionally painting houses. He's a religious man, unlike Pete, and has spent several years as a member of various Christian groups.
A collection of poignant, romantic and funny tales performed by Academy Award -winning actor William Hurt. This collection includes a bonus track of an exclusive interview with William Hurt. Hurt's readings are thoughtful, tender, romantic, and resonant. A treasure.
"amazing voice for audio"
"Not Scared" by Adam Gopnik, "A Farewell to Alms?" by James Surowiecki, "My Dog Is Tom Cruise" by Noah Baumbach, "Get Out the Vote" by Seymour M. Hersh, "Bloodsuckers" by John Colapinto, "Awaiting Orders" by Tobias Wolff, and "Making Mischief" by Anthony Lane.
"The Best Thing to Happen to Audible Ever"
Ann's friends envy her. None of their husbands even lift a finger to help with the household chores. Ann's husband is different, though. Then a simple hypothetical conversation while they wash and dry the dishes causes Ann to see her husband in a different light - and causes him to rethink the way two people can know each other.
Meticulous, funny, eccentric - Mary has always been mindful of the complex role she plays as a professor of history. Her lectures are carefully written out beforehand; her departmental loyalties ambiguous. She is so careful, in fact, that she began to see herself as flat, dull, and lifeless. The closing of Brandon College, the institution she'd spent more than fifteen years at, changes everything. Forced to find another position, Mary finds herself at an experimental college in rainy Oregon.
"Moneyman" by John Cassidy: "Divo's Diva" by Lauren Collins; "Troublemakers" by Malcolm Gladwell; "Very Bad People" by Zev Borow; "The Red Devil" by John Cassidy; "The Deposition" by Tobias Wolff; and "The Earthquake" by Louis Menand.
In this short story by the masterful Tobias Wolff, a teenage boy learns the joys - and struggles - of adult life.
Eager for independence and adult-like freedom, a teenage boy takes a summer job baling hay on a rural farm. Savoring the farm wife’s attention and the extra change in his pocket, the boy feels like a grown man. The fellow hands give him a sense of camaraderie - Clemson, a fastidious boy who attends the same high school; Eduardo, a talkative Mexican seasonal worker; and Miguel, a quiet man and Eduardo’s brother.
Mark's parents have never done a thing for him. When he got out of the army and married Krystal, they were against it, just as they are against his moving to Los Angeles. But Mark has a dream, a dream of being an entertainer, of having a show in Las Vegas. So he packs Krystal and their son, Hans, into their car and starts driving from Arizona to California, determined to show his parents how wrong they are to doubt him. But when the car breaks down at a small gas station in the desert, Mark and Krystal are forced to face realities about their future and their marriage.
A son sits at his mother's deathbed, hesitant to leave her side. He leafs through one of her old photo albums, remembering her abusive, estranged father. When a visit to a funeral home turns into a conversation with a beautiful, mysterious woman, he develops a deeper - and perhaps darker - understanding of his relationship with his mother.
Tessa Hadley published her first work of fiction, Accidents in the Home, at the age of 45, three months after her critical study Henry James and the Imagination of Pleasure came out. A second novel, Everything Will Be All Right, was published the following year, in 2003. She teaches English and creative writing at Bath Spa University College and is currently working on a third novel and on a play, The Wendy House, for BBC Radio.
García, the wealthy, swaggering son of a foreign dictator, invites two lower-class boys from his boarding school to have dinnerin New York along with his Spanish-speaking stepmother, Linda. When the groupdecides to go to a kitschy, unpretentious Swedish smorgasbord rather than a fine restaurant, García refuses to leave the limousine, still angry with Linda after an argument over money. Linda proves to be more than the young men had anticipated, and she has more influence over them during their brief encounter than they will ever know.
A story of siblings and faith from short-story master Tobias Wolff. Frances has always been protective of her younger brother Frank. The children of a brutal father and a sick, defenseless mother, Frances fought to keep her brother safe. And throughout all of his adult failings – from drug addiction to near-fatal car crashes - she has stood by his side. Now Frank has found religion. Standing in his crisp white shirt and restrictive tie, he's eager to recount last Sunday's sermon to his older sister.
Mr. Givens’ obituary is nothing remarkable, hardly something to remember at all. He led a quiet life, served in the Army, was married to the same woman for 42 years, and worked at the same job practically his whole life. He wasn’t a baseball player or a movie star, he was the furthest thing from a celebrity. In fact, the only thing noteworthy about his obituary is what happens after it runs in the newspaper, when he shows up in the office of the Metro editor wondering who decided to pronounce him dead.
Sergeant Morse is a risk-taker, playing chicken with the potential exposure of his sexuality. Julianne is looking for her brother, Specialist Hart, not knowing he’s shipped out to Iraq. In a surprising moment of tenderness, Sergeant Morse offers to help her, but whether due to fear of exposure or stubbornness, they might both be beyond rescue.