The interlinked tales of Late Stories detail the excursions of an aging narrator navigating the amorphous landscape of grief in a series of tender and often waggishly elliptical digressions.
Although it has been several years since the death of his longtime wife, Abigail, author Philip Seidel struggles with his self-imposed isolation and reclusiveness, all the while continuing to write: about their shared life, its joys—artistic, filial, sensual—its disappointments, and of the slow decline of Abigail’s health. Along the way, he rambles, fantasizes, baldly recounts his daily routines and foibles, amends, backtracks, and repeats himself—ultimately giving us a wholly human and heartfelt portrait of bereavement.
Described by Jonathan Lethem as “one of the great secret masters” of contemporary American literature, Stephen Dixon is at the height of his form in these uncanny and virtuoso fictions.
Praise for Late Stories
“Why isn’t Dixon a household name? [ . . . ] His writing, which is plainspoken and deceptively straightforward, is the sort that sticks with you, because it cuts to the uncertainty of life [ . . . ] Dixon is a master of the minor moments, the dreams and the disappointments, that transfigure every one of us.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“Late Stories is a fantastic mourning, fantastically written.” —The Paris Review
“Masterful.” —Foreword Reviews
“Through Dixon’s work we come to recognize what is most ‘real’ about human experience: the effort to understand it.” —Full Stop
“Stephen Dixon’s unpredictable, often haunting fiction has given him no shortage of high-profile admirers. His latest book, Late Stories, is a collection of linked short stories that delve deeply into bleak emotional territory and explore the nature of grief.” —Vol. 1 Brooklyn
“In Stephen Dixon’s intricate story cycle Late Stories, [ . . . ] the comprehensive interiority [of Dixon’s narrator] reveals the masterful consistency with which Dixon maintains the realistic episodes of his complex creation [ . . . ] Readers will enjoy the depth of thought combined with the economy of language in a generous collection of stories.” —Heavy Feather Review
“Dixon has devoted his writing career to making the style of a story correspond to its content. [In Late Stories,] Dixon’s voice is instantly recognizable [ . . . ] and he is constantly developing new narrative techniques.” —The Hopkins Review