Kelly Link - Get in Trouble: Stories & Juan Martinez - Best Worst American: Stories
Link’s hauntingly original work has won her legions of fans—including Michael Chabon and Neil Gaiman. Her latest collection of short fiction features nine stories made of wonder and magic. In one she takes us backstage at a reality show about hunting ghosts. In another we drop in at a hotel where a conference of dentists runs concurrently with a gathering of superheroes. We watch what happens when a birthday girl gets a life-sized animated doll. But the plotlines barely hint at Link’s startling details, her characters’ outsize passions, or the stories’ spectacular denouements.
An assistant professor at Northwestern University, Martinez was born in Colombia and has published his fiction in literary journals including TriQuarterly and McSweeney’s. In his first collection he paints a world that’s slightly askew, with characters flummoxed not by the strange but by the ordinary. Exploring the clash between expectation and reality, familiarity and disorientation, Martinez’s work gives us new frameworks for understanding our experience.