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The Secret Goldfish by David Means


The Secret Goldfish by David Means

An extraordinary collection of short stories from the Man Booker prize longlisted author of HYSTOPIA.In the tradition of Raymond Carver or Tobias Wolff, these are all-encompassing stories of the American psyche, of love and loss and of the landscape and its people.A goldfish circles in its bowl, refusing to die, becoming the silent focus of a difficult family life; a pianist loses his talents as he is forced to question the meaning of love and commitment. Through a blend of lyricism and humour, these stories of ordinary human dilemmas take flight and become mythical and universal. David Means is a rare writer who transports us to the heart of what it is to be human.


`Means evokes a deep, troubling pathos without a speck of sentimentality. The same could be said of his work in general ... Means is a fine writer, superior to many of his more famous contemporaries ... His prose is now reliably well-judged, often masterful
Michel Faber, Guardian

`Means weaves punchy tales that arrive straight at the violent heart of a relationship. He writes in `A Visit From Jesus': The World, this world this great country of his, could eat anything, absolutely anything up. Means shows us, with intense honesty, just how this is done
Carl Wilkinson, Observer

`The short story is Mean's natural medium: in his hands it seems as elemental a form as the landscape from which he patiently carves it - he takes you to places you don't want to visit, but makes you understand why you have to go there
Daily Telegraph

.`Short stories is a form at which he excels. Reading these stories is like being resensitised, woken up to the astonishing possibilities of language
The Sunday Business Post

About the Author

David Means' second collection of stories, Assorted Fire Events, earned the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for fiction and a National Book Critics Circle nomination. His third book, The Secret Goldfish, received widespread critical acclaim and was shortlisted for the Frank O'Connor International Short Story Prize. His fourth book, The Spot, was selected as a 2010 Notable Book by The New York Times, and won an O. Henry Prize. His books have been translated into eight languages, and his fiction has appeared The New Yorker, Harper's Magazine, Esquire, Zoetrope, The Best American Short Stories,The Best American Mystery Stories, The O. Henry Prize Stories, and numerous other publications. He lives in Nyack, New York, and teaches at Vassar College.

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Book Info

Publication date

3rd April 2006


David Means

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HarperPerennial an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers


224 pages


Short stories



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