A brilliant new collection of short fiction from the National Book Award finalist and author of The Giant’s House.
From the author of the beloved novel The Giant's House - finalist for the National Book Award - comes a beautiful new story collection, her first in twenty years. Laced through with humour, empathy, and rare and magical descriptive powers these nine vibrant stories navigate the fragile space between love and loneliness. In 'Property', a young scholar, grieving the sudden death of his wife, decides to refurbish the Maine rental house they were to share together by removing his landlord's possessions. In 'Peter Elroy: A Documentary by Ian Casey', the household of a successful filmmaker is visited years later by his famous first subject, whose trust he betrayed. And in the unforgettable title story, a family makes a quixotic decision to flee to Paris for a summer, only to find their lives altered in an unimaginable way by their teenage daughter's risky behaviour.
In Elizabeth McCracken's universe, heartache is always interwoven with strange, charmed moments of joy - an unexpected conversation with small children, the gift of a parrot with a bad French accent - that remind us of the wonder and mystery of being alive. Thunderstruck & Other Stories shows this inimitable writer working at the full height of her powers.
“These nine stories are filled with longing, guilt and violence.”
New York Times
“Jewelled and barbed with the beauty and brutality of real life, these are sentences of perfect weight and understanding. There are no fillers here, no stories that disappoint: the nine coalesce into something rare and understatedly breathtaking. Like the missing who haunt these stories, Thunderstruck is unforgettable.”
Stuart Evers, Observer
“Wonderful, moving tales.”
Erica Wagner, Financial Times
“An electric blend of hilarity and despair.”
Bonnie Jo Campbell, O, The Oprah Magazine
“[A] powerful collection.”
John Self, Independent on Sunday
“McCracken writes in lilting, contained prose, and imbues her narratives with wry humour and the soothing resonance of fairy tales… An unforgettable collection that should be irredeemably sad but, in fact, is strangely life-affirming.”
Francesca Angelini, Sunday Times
“I was so enthralled by her world, I didn’t want to leave”
Carys Davies, Metro
“Please do yourself a favour and secure a copy of this splendid book. And not because it is the winner of the Story Prize, but because is exceptionally good”
Mario Guslandi, Nudge