Stay Awake

Stay Awake

Stories

eBook - 2012
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"Eerily beautiful . . . [Chaon] is the modern day John Cheever."--Boston Sunday Globe "Powerful and disturbing . . . The shocks in this collection are many."--The Washington Post These haunting, suspenseful stories by acclaimed author Dan Chaon feature scattered families, unfulfilled dreamers, anxious souls--lost, fragile, searching characters who wander between ordinary life and a psychological shadowland. They have experienced intense love or loss, grief or loneliness, displacement or disconnection--and exist in a twilight realm, in a place by the window late at night when the streets are empty and the world appears to be quiet. But it is not, and neither are you. And since you cannot sleep, you stay awake. "Chaon is able to create fully realized characters in mere pages. . . . This collection is further proof that Chaon is one of the best fiction writers working right now."--Omaha...
Publisher: 2012
ISBN: 9780345532305
Characteristics: 1 online resource

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LucasHill
Mar 20, 2018

The father with a past he wants to forget;
The teen boy who is trying to face up to an adult tragedy;
The mother who is trying to cope with her deformed child, while also dealing with the traumatic accident her husband has recently been in;
An empty nest mother who wonders if she should begin a sexual relationship with her ex-husband, the victim of a brain injury who is now very unlike his former self;
A young man, living with his recently widowed foster mother, speaks to his half sister about their difficult childhoods (a story that might be a predecessor to Chaon's most recent novel, Ill Will);
A widowed man believes his dead wife might be trying to communicate with him;
A man kidnaps his girlfriend's son to rescue him from her drug use;
Life falling apart after the death of a young man's parents;
Two brothers, one trying to escape his train wrecked life, reunite to go home;
A man thinks back to his mother's death as he is waiting for his injured girlfriend;
A desperately unhealthy lawyer delves into Portland's underworld while going on a bender;
Sisters look back at the one act of their father that changed all their lives

Bad parenting, lives in tatters, crime, desperation and the murky past: all hallmarks of Dan Chaon's extraordinarily dark stories. I am more a fan than ever.

l
llwboston
Mar 23, 2013

I gave up after the fourth story. Although there are some chilling plot elements, I found the protagonists of each story to be vague and their general sense of alienation became monotonous.

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