You Are Having a Good Time Summary and Reviews

You Are Having a Good Time

Stories

by Amie Barrodale

You Are Having a Good Time by Amie Barrodale X
You Are Having a Good Time by Amie Barrodale
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  • Published in USA  Jul 2016
    208 pages
    Genre: Short Stories/Essays

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Book Summary

Barrodale's startlingly funny and original fictions get under your skin and make you reconsider the fragile compromises that underpin our daily lives.

In You Are Having a Good Time, Amie Barrodale's collection of highly compressed and charged tales, the veneer of normality is stripped from her characters' lives to reveal the seething and contradictory desires that fuel them. In "Animals," an up-and-coming starlet harbors a complicated attraction toward her abusive director. In "Frank Advice for Fat Women," an ethically compromised psychiatrist is drawn into the middle of a dysfunctional mother-daughter relationship. And in "The Imp," a supernatural possession ruins a man's relationship with his pregnant wife.

Barrodale's protagonists drink too much, say the wrong things, want the wrong people. They're hounded by longings (and sometimes ghosts) to the point where they are forced to confront the illusions they cling to. They're brought to life in stories that don't behave as you expect stories to behave. Barrodale's startlingly funny and original fictions get under your skin and make you reconsider the fragile compromises that underpin our daily lives.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

BookBrowse
"These stories reminded me most of Miranda July -- a flat, affectless style with unconnected sentences; themes of Hollywood and the emptiness of modern life."

Other Reviews
"Starred Review. The 10 stories in Barrodale's stellar debut collection explore the complications of modern relationships ... Barrodale is comfortable working in an impressive range of styles, and will surely pick up a number of admirers with this standout debut." - Publishers Weekly

"An unrepentantly offbeat collection by an admirably free-spirited writer." - Kirkus

"These short tales from Vice fiction editor Amie Barrodale focus on precarious relationships: moments with psychiatrists, actresses, and misfits - people who make us nervous. For fans of Lydia Davis and David Foster Wallace, her debut is incisive, risky, and a little irreverent, and a real writer's book." - Elle

"[Barrodale's] writing is fierce, intimidating, and well worth our attention." - Jay Slayton-Joslin, Cultured Vultures

"Amie Barrodale's stories make me think of an updated John Cheever - that is to say she is witty, soulful, and sharp all at once. You Are Having a Good Time is delightful and touching." - Mary Gaitskill, author of The Mare

"These intensely sexy and intensely funny stories skitter along the edge of madness. Amie Barrodale is a Nathanael West, deeply concerned with morality and with pushing the edge of what makes a story a story." - Akhil Sharma, author of Family Life

"Amie Barrodale's stories are the stuff of David Lynchian eeriness riding just beneath the surface of everyday contemporary life." - James Franco

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Author Information

Amie Barrodale

Amie Barrodale's stories and essays have appeared in The Paris Review, Harper's Magazine, VICE, McSweeney's, and other publications. In 2012 she was awarded The Paris Review's Plimpton Prize for Fiction for her story "William Wei." She is a former staff writer for The Onion and is currently the fiction editor at VICE.

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