A delightful and terrifying collection of twenty short stories, edited by critically acclaimed writer and novelist Mark Jude Poirier.
Adolescence. Fortunately it's over with early and once you've finished paying for therapy, there's still a chance to move on with your life.
The Worst Years of Your Life says it all: angst, depression, growing pains, puberty, nasty boys and nastier girls; these are stories of aaawkwardness and embarassment from a stellar list of contributors. Great postmodern classics like John Barth's "Lost in the Funhouse" are paired with newer selections, such as Stacey Richter's "The Beauty Treatment" and A.M. Homes's "A Real Doll," in this searing, unforgettable collection. A perfect book for revisiting old favorites and discovering new ones, and the opportunity to relive the worst years of your life -- without having to relive the worst years of your life.
Sometimes sad, often poignant and always painfully honest, the stories in this fiction anthology do away with the rose-colored glasses that grown-ups often employ to make memories of adolescence bearable, drawing them back into the bewildering fog of youth. Beyond a talented group of writers-including George Saunders, Jennifer Egan, Stacey Richter, A.M. Homes and Nathan Englander-author and editor Poirier has gathered a happily diverse set of sad-sack stories. Julie Orringer produces a "Note to Sixth-Grade Self," in which she advises an awkward 12-year-old how to get through excruciating dance classes ("Do not think about Zachary Booth's hand warts"); Mark Poirier contributes the story of an unhappy boy whose compulsive lies hide an unspeakable secret; and Amber Dermont posits a convincing tale of a teenage girl learning to understand her abhorrent mother. For adult readers, this rich, candid collection is bound to stir memories of their own growing pains, and more than a few words of thanks that they're in the past; for those in the thick of it, these stories will, if nothing else, take a little of the sting out of teenage loneliness and confusion.