Your audiobook is waiting…

The Accomplished Guest

Stories
Narrated by: Gabra Zackman, Jacques Roy
Length: 7 hrs and 7 mins
4 out of 5 stars (9 ratings)
Regular price: $17.00
$14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

Publisher's Summary

A magnificent new collection from award-winning author Ann Beattie - featuring recent O. Henry, Pushcart, and Best American Short Story selections.

Surprising and revealing, set along the East Coast from Maine to Key West, Ann Beattie's astutely observed new collection explores unconventional friendships, frustrated loves, mortality, and aging.

One theme of The Accomplished Guest is people paying visits or receiving visitors, traveling to see old friends, the joys and tolls of hosting company (and of being hosted). The occasion might be a wedding, a birthday, a reunion, an annual Christmas party, or another opportunity to gather and attempt to bond with biological relatives or chosen families. In some stories, as in life, what begins as a benign social event becomes a situation played for high stakes.

The stories in The Accomplished Guest are marked by an undercurrent of loss and an unexpected element of violence, with Beattie's signature mordant humor woven throughout. Some characters provide welcome diversions; others are uninvited interruptions; all are indelibly drawn by the endlessly amusing and accomplished Ann Beattie.

Beattie's debut collection, Distortions, was published 40 years ago, but her writing is as fresh, funny, and relevant as ever. She is "a national treasure, the author of short stories that will endure and continue to inspire" (Jay McInerney, The New York Times Book Review).

©2017 Ann Beattie (P)2017 Simon & Schuster Audio

Critic Reviews

"Jacques Roy and Gabra Zackman narrate their assigned tales with comfortable deliveries that invite the listener into these slices of life.... Both narrators deliver Beattie's astute observations and droll humor with a light, inviting touch." (AudioFile)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    3
  • 4 Stars
    2
  • 3 Stars
    4
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Performance

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    3
  • 4 Stars
    3
  • 3 Stars
    3
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Story

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    3
  • 4 Stars
    3
  • 3 Stars
    3
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

It's Ann Beattie, of course it is great

I truly enjoyed everything about this. The writing, the narration, the many and varied themes, and the fact that the quality of Beattie's work never dips.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

One of Our Best Short Story Writers

When I was a recent college graduate working in NY, Ann Beattie's New Yorker stories always made me aspire to THAT kind of life. When I was a graduate student at UVA, stories about Ann Beattie abounded--and were all good--since she was a teacher there every few years. As a middle-aged adult I have met her multiple times. Her personal candor and humor are reflected as much in her personality as in her stories. And so it is really a delight to see the same quick wit and heart in stories about characters of a certain age now that I am of a certain age. And it also must be said that the short story is sooo hard to get right. But she has been doing it right for decades.