Karate Chop: Book summary and reviews of Karate Chop by Dorthe Nors

Karate Chop

Stories

by Dorthe Nors

Karate Chop by Dorthe Nors X
Karate Chop by Dorthe Nors
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  • Published Feb 2014
    112 pages
    Genre: Short Stories

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Book Summary

Karate Chop, Dorthe Nors's acclaimed story collection, is the debut book in the collaboration between Graywolf Press and A Public Space. These fifteen compact stories are meticulously observed glimpses of everyday life that expose the ominous lurking under the ordinary. While his wife sleeps, a husband prowls the Internet, obsessed with female serial killers; a bureaucrat tries to reinvent himself, exposing goodness as artifice when he converts to Buddhism in search of power; a woman sits on the edge of the bed where her lover lies, attempting to locate a motive for his violence within her own self-doubt.

Shifting between moments of violence (real and imagined) and mundane contemporary life, these stories encompass the complexity of human emotions, our capacity for cruelty as well as compassion. Not so much minimalist as stealthy, Karate Chop delivers its blows with an understatement that shows a master at work.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. Nowhere here is a word out of place. Imagine Grace Paley with more than a little of Mary Gaitskill's keen eye for the despair and violence of sex, mixed with an otherness that's unsettlingly odd and vivid." - Publishers Weekly

"Arresting... These amuse-bouches are a fine introduction to [Nors's] work." - Kirkus

"Dorthe Nors is a writer of moments - quiet, raw portraits of existential mediation, at times dyspeptic, but never unsympathetic." - Justin Alvarez, Paris Review Daily

"Beautiful, faceted, haunting stories... Dorthe Nors is fantastic... a rising star of Danish letters." - Junot Diaz, author of This Is How You Lose Her

"Readers of Nors's stories are reminded of the thrills and dangers of living: never are we far from the dark undercurrent - nor exempt from the demands - of routine existence." - Yiyun Li, author of Gold Boy, Emerald Girl

"This collection is a marvel - droll, compassionate, and just really smart. It takes only one story - and really just a paragraph - to note the excellence of this work in its unsentimental and forthright account of people slogging through their lives." - Fiona Maazel, author of Woke Up Lonely

This information about Karate Chop was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's membership magazine, and in our weekly "Publishing This Week" newsletter. Publication information is for the USA, and (unless stated otherwise) represents the first print edition. The reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author and feel that they do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, send us a message with the mainstream reviews that you would like to see added.

Any "Author Information" displayed below reflects the author's biography at the time this particular book was published.

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Author Information

Dorthe Nors

Dorthe Nors is the author of five novels and the recipient of the Danish Arts Agency's Three Year Grant for "her unusual and extraordinary talent." Her stories have appeared in Agni, A Public Space, Boston Review, Ecotone, and Fence.

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more short stories...

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