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DescriptionWINNER OF FC2's CATHERINE DOCTOROW INNOVATIVE FICTION PRIZE
A gathering of luminescent stories that illustrates how fraught and contingent the simplest of lives can be, and the often unexpected means available to each of us for our own salvation.
The truths revealed and the lives upended in the 13 stories that make up Yannick Murphy's By the Time You Read This are at once singularly foreign and uncannily familiar. A wife pens a series of suicide notes to her family that verge on the comic, hovering between the tyrannical and the absurd. A mother obsesses over what her child eats. A young girl left with caretakers in New York draws on her potent imagination with consequences in real life that are both liberating and disastrous. In a college application essay a young woman finally begins to make sense of the troubling vicissitudes of her existence. A young French girl departs for America with her reprehensible beau to find she's as much a stranger to herself abroad as she was at home. As with her previous novels and story collections, Murphy's keen rendering of these disparate, complex lives illuminate in ways both quiet and startling our capacity for deliverance and devastation through daring acts of self-invention.
The University of Alabama Press
30 August 2021
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