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This vibrant new collection of nineteen short stories by the two-time winner of the prestigious O. Henry Prize is by turns erotic, wildly funny, bawdy, and poignant. Eidus explores our contemporary obsessions: sexboth safe and not-so-safe; Prozac, the '90s drug of choice; Nautilus machine mania; the sinister attraction of vampires; film star James Dean; and rock 'n' roll icons Axl Rose and Elvisall with dazzling range.
Janice Eidus' quirky characters seek trancendence in exotic ways, and they sometimes even find it. These unpredictable, up-to-the minute stories demonstrate that Janice Eidus continues to be "...one of the freshest and most idiosyncratic voices on the fiction frontier."
(SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE)
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Balancing humor and depth, [these] 19 short stories reflect the quirky voice, at once cynical and sincere, that has made Eidus a two-time winner of the O. Henry Award....Eidus ultimately turns each story into a well-conceived, finely executed and deeply moving tale.
PUBLISHERS WEEKLY (starred review)
THE CELIBACY CLUB is a sassy cultural studies dissertation, cross dressing as a collection of hip New York fairy tales. Eidus attends closely to the small momentsa shift from choice to decision, an exchange of habit for riskin which individual evolution occurs. Eidus' nineteen stories range from spiritual parable to intellectual parody as she recruits a madcap cast of [characters]."
THE WOMEN'S REVIEW OF BOOKS
[These] stories have a rare and raw excitement about them. They lull us into a kind of complacency and then grab us by the throat and shake us hard. They let us laugh ourselves right to the edge of terror. They are entirely impossible and deeply true, and in this contradiction they dazzle us, they stun us, they show us precisely where we live.
Pam Houston, author of COWBOYS ARE MY WEAKNESS
THE CELIBACY CLUB is a particularly rewarding demonstration of how Eidus weds acid irony to well-crafted prose. The 19 stories in this collection are brisk, bracing investigations of the female psyche....the title story, originally published in THE VILLAGE VOICE, is a subtle, sublime meditation on the importance of sex to the female ego."
TIME OUT NEW YORK
Janice Eidus can imagine a novel's worth of lives and events into one short story...In number of stories and spirit, this collection is a generous one...The comic stories are wittily dry and polished to a sheen, [while] the others explore unknown areas of the heart...
THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH
Fiction Writer Janice Eidus [is one of] the "Top 10 Young Writers To Watch!"
THE BLOOMSBURY REVIEW
The true power of Eidus's writing is a brilliant imagination that can make every fantastic notion seem like an everyday reality.
RAIN TAXI REVIEW OF BOOKS
Eidus' strength lies in her ability to seamlessly move from one voice to another. Whether in the quirky humor of the story, ELVIS, AXL, AND ME, the youthful magic of THE MERMAID OF ORCHARD BEACH, or the devastating tragedy of PANDORA'S BOX, she writes with confidence and elegance.
ELLIOTT BAY BOOKNOTES
Eidus' powerful stories about men and women waging silent war against the culture have the eerie effect of waking us up even though we didn't know we were sleeping.
HAL SIROWITZ, author of MOTHER SAID