“Hands down my favorite book of the year.” -- Ann Patchett, New York Times bestselling author of The Dutch House and Commonwealth
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Family Fang comes his first short story collection in nearly a decade, combining his signature quirkiness with his keen eye for emotional complexity to explore the fraught relationship between parents and children.
“Wildfire Johnny” is the story of a man who discovers a magic razor that allows him to travel back in time. “Scroll Through the Weapons” is about a couple taking care of their underfed and almost feral nieces and nephews. “Signal to the Faithful” follows a boy as he takes a tense road trip with his priest. And “Baby, You’re Gonna Be Mine,” the title story, is about a narcissistic rock star who moves back home during a rough patch. These stories all build on each other in strange and remarkable ways, showcasing Wilson’s crackling wit and big heart.
Filled with imagination and humor, Baby, You’re Gonna Be Mine is an exuberant collection of captivating and charmingly bizarre stories that promise to burrow their way into your heart and soul.
In the world of Wilson's darkly funny short stories, children and deer die, and unhappy, helpless people drink and do irresponsible things. Wilson (Perfect Little World) shows people managing as best they can: trying to survive video game zombies when the rest of their life is too horrible to fix ("Scroll Through the Weapons"), helping selfish grown children because no one else would love them enough to do so ("Housewarming" and the title story), and coping with the horror of adolescence by making horror movies ("The Horror We Made"). "No Joke, This Is Going to Be Painful" involves pariahs ice fighting, but its title would work for virtually every story in the collection. The exception is the one weak link, "The Lost Baby," which taps into a pain so deep that neither humor nor the human ability to occasionally not be awful can redeem anything. The rest stick with the reader and show a terrible world made less so, sometimes, by human contact, even though humans were usually the problem in the first place.