Joanna Scott’s unparalleled gift for storytelling has inspired hyperbole from critics and her devoted fanbase, which includes some of the most preeminent writers of our time. But not since Various Antidotes, a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award, has she turned her talents toward short stories.
At the seaside wedding of two lovers kept apart by the caprices of fate, a doting uncle looks on while his errant brother, father of the bride,struggles to free himself from a locked bathroom across town. A young woman arrives in Jazz Age New York with stars in her eyes and a few coins in her pocket and after a string of failed jobs, she thinks she’s found salvation in a romance with her boss at a local greasy spoon but learns that her idea of herself and others’ideas of her are quite different. A bright business man seems content with all the trappings his good fortune affords, until a flat tire and a chance encounter with a couple of mechanics in the country upsets his entire view.
Here Joanna Scott offers a group of tales that celebrate her acknowledged sense of character, plot and her gift for capturing the breathtaking tension even in life’s quietest moments.