Trajectory: Stories (Hardcover)
Russo's signature mix of dad aphorisms ("all hat and no cattle" eg), gory humor, and whip-smart insight into relationships, aging, and just the human condition in general is on full display in these four fantastic stories. My favorite is Milton and Marcus- a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at the movie business as our protagonist tries to get a screenplay made. All four of these though, are greatly satisfying! a must-read for Russo fans!— Greg
Following the best-selling Everybody's Fool, a new collection of short fiction that demonstrates that Richard Russo--winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Empire Falls--is also a master of this genre.
Russo's characters in these four expansive stories bear little similarity to the blue-collar citizens we're familiar with from many of his novels. In "Horseman," a professor confronts a young plagiarist as well as her own weaknesses as the Thanksgiving holiday looms closer and closer: "And after that, who knew?" In "Intervention," a realtor facing an ominous medical prognosis finds himself in his father's shadow while he presses forward--or not. In "Voice," a semiretired academic is conned by his increasingly estranged brother into coming along on a group tour of the Venice Biennale, fleeing a mortifying incident with a traumatized student back in Massachusetts but encountering further complications in the maze of Venice. And in "Milton and Marcus," a lapsed novelist struggles with his wife's illness and tries to rekindle his screenwriting career, only to be stymied by the pratfalls of that trade when he's called to an aging, iconic star's mountaintop retreat in Wyoming.
About the Author
In addition to The Whore's Child, RICHARD RUSSO is the author of nine novels, most recently the best-selling Everybody's Fool and That Old Cape Magic, and the memoir Elsewhere. In 2002 he received the Pulitzer Prize for Empire Falls. He lives in Portland, Maine.
“Thoughtful, soulful . . . It will abruptly break your heart. That’s what Richard Russo does, without pretension or fuss, time and time again.” —Jennifer Senior, The New York Times
“[Trajectory is] so rich and flavorsome that the temptation is to devour it all at once. I can’t in good conscience advise otherwise.” —Laura Collins-Hughes, The Boston Globe
“Russo develops these stories with smooth assurance, allowing readers to discover layers of meaning in his perfectly calibrated narration.” —Publishers Weekly
“Russo rarely wastes a word, interweaving details and dialogue into master classes on storytelling.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred)
“Russo’s [characters] are sharply in view, and like opera singers performing quintets or sestets, they are all vital contributors. Equally significantly, their problems spring from their personalities, and the resolutions are heart-warming because they do indeed feel like real possibilities. . . . All four stories are challenging because they raise questions about why we live our lives the way we do, and if that’s all right.”—Claire Hopley, The Washington Times
“Russo has fashioned tales compact enough to make an immediate impression (and to read in a single sitting), but rich [in] believable characters, graceful plotting and pointed dialogue.”—Peter Tonguette, The Columbus Dispatch
“Entertaining and compellingly provocative. . . . vibrant narratives with distinctive characters.”—Robert Allen Papinchak, New York Journal of Books