Fresh Complaint

Fresh Complaint

by Jeffrey Eugenides

Overview: Jeffrey Eugenides’s bestselling novels have shown him to be an astute observer of the crises of adolescence, self-discovery, family love, and what it means to be American in our times. The stories in Fresh Complaint explore equally rich—and intriguing—territory. Ranging from the bitingly reproductive antics of “Baster” to the dreamy, moving account of a young traveler’s search for enlightenment in “Air Mail” (selected by Annie Proulx for Best American Short Stories), this collection presents characters in the midst of personal and national emergencies. We meet a failed poet who, envious of other people’s wealth during the real-estate bubble, becomes an embezzler; a clavichordist whose dreams of art founder under the obligations of marriage and fatherhood; and, in “Fresh Complaint,” a high school student whose wish to escape the strictures of her immigrant family lead her to a drastic decision that upends the life of a middle-aged British physicist.

Narratively compelling, beautifully written, and packed with a density of ideas despite their fluid grace, these stories chart the development and maturation of a major American writer.

Faith Bowers (09/06/19): I always have an audio book. This is one that I enjoyed in August. I have read almost all of Eugenides books and though I do not love short story compilations, I thought that a good writer and listening would be an excellent combination. So it was. The stories are about modern day protagonists with a challenging plots and are well written. They are all discussion worthy and very entertaining. Have a great listen.
Rating: ***

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