Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day
“This guy can write!” —Ray Bradbury
Loory's collection of wry and witty, dark and perilous contemporary fables is populated by people-and monsters and trees and jocular octopi-who are united by twin motivations: fear and desire. In his singular universe, televisions talk (and sometimes sing), animals live in small apartments where their nephews visit from the sea, and men and women and boys and girls fall down wells and fly through space and find love on Ferris wheels. In a voice full of fable, myth, and dream, Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day draws us into a world of delightfully wicked recognitions, and introduces us to a writer of uncommon talent and imagination.
Contains 40 stories, including “The Duck,” “The Man and the Moose,” and “Death and the Fruits of the Tree,” as heard on NPR’s This American Life, “The Book,” as heard on Selected Shorts, and “The TV,” as published in The New Yorker.
The 40 cheerfully ominous stories in this collection feel like collaborations between Tex Avery and Franz Kafka. Each starts with a surreal premise a man notices a strange hat staring at him, a duck falls in love with a rock, etc. and sidles along from there. By itself, each sketch is tantalizingly incomplete, but that uneasy wonder is part of Loory's purpose. When these pieces work, as they often do, they invite readers to develop the idea themselves, to use their own imaginations to flesh out characterizations and consequences. Reading several stories in a row might mitigate some of the individual impact, but together they provide a series of glimpses into a world in which all manner of disturbing discoveries and transformations are possible.
Beautiful, moving, funny.
Enchanting, haunting little fables worth your time and attention.
These stories will tickle your brain.
Here's the thing about the stories in Ben Loory's collection Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day, each one will make you feel something different. One of them made me cry with its sad beauty. Another scared the bejeezus out of me with its quiet terror. Another made this desert rat of a girl long for the ocean. And still another made me laugh out loud with delight. Some of them torture you with their brevity...wait, you say, that's it? But I want to know more! But Mr. Loory doesn't tell you more. And it's ok really. Only giving you that bit that he's giving you and making that bit so very powerful is what keeps his stories with you for days and days after you've read them. Pondering...imagining...weighing.