Tuesday, October 4, 2011
EVERYBODY LOVES SAUNDERS
George Saunders writes short stories, essays, novellas and children's books. He is the author of an essay collection The Braindead Megaphone, and the short collections CivilWarLand in Bad Decline, Pastoralia and In Persusasion Nation. He teaches Creative Writing at Syracuse University.
He may be off the cultural main path, but serious readers and writers pass his books back and forth and talk about his work the way some people talk about "Everybody Loves Raymond." And I mean the people that like the show. His weirdly surreal "Pastoralia" was the first Saunders I read, and would serve as a good introduction to any new reader curious about his magical abilities. In a world of blowhards and gladhanders and loudmouths vying for our attention, George is a quiet, thoughtful man who uses his head. He doesn't write potboilers or pop fiction or books with embossed covers, doorstop novels sold at airports, historical sagas or romances or mysteries. Yet his work is truly mysterious--more mysterious than any formulaic whodunit--and he keeps the reader on her toes. You could do worse than read George Saunders.
"Home" by George Saunders.