Nic Brown has received a wonderfully warm NYT review for his new collection of linked stories. I'd been wondering what to read next. I've gotten to swim in a lot of books this summer, partly because of a few days of real R&R. In the past couple weeks, I've read Wolff's A Boy's Life (very worthy of its rep--wow), re-read Malamud's The Natural (better and worse the second time around), read half of Berger's Little Big Man (I loved it, but the book belonged to the house where I was staying), and read Carlos Ruiz Zafon's The Shadow of the Wind (this is why I rarely read bestsellers: it was so not, as the cover says, Borges meets Eco meets Garcia Marquez!). All that's left on the pile right now is the last chapter of another baseball novel, The Celebrant, by Eric Rolfe Greenbert (weaves fact and fiction around the early 20th c. giant Christy Mathewson), Kyle Beachy's the Slide (met him here in IC this summer), and, happily, Kiki P's recently published poetry collection Fort Red Border. Okay, and Brothers Karamazov, which I'll have to make time for (never read it, was liking it, but got drawn away). Fyodor refuses to let me put another hefty tome (like Diaz or Bolano) on the pile. Now, thankfully, Nic's book has temporarily solved the problem.
By the way, you'll see in the review a lengthy description of the collection's opening story, which should be recognizable--at least in the abstract--to anybody who was at the special workshop held by Jim Shepard during the WW director search. Very fond memories of Shepard getting deep into the POV of that party!