Firstly, Less by Andrew Sean Greer. Arthur Less is a middle-aged, second-tier novelist and has been ignoring literary invitations—the kind of invitations that second-tier novelists receive, like literary panel positions, writer-in-residencies, interviewing slots at literary festivals, all in far-flung locations. But when his young lover, Freddie, out of patience with Less’s reluctance to commit, announces he’s getting married to someone else, Less needs to be out of San Francisco—even better, out of the country—for the wedding. Continue reading More bite-sized reviews
The rusty flatbed lumbered along the track, the wire cage on the tray rattling and lurching with every rut. The old man heard the bird squawking. This was the place.
He pulled off where the track ran down and across the creek, where the water ran shallow, clear and cold over glistening stones, under a canopy of she-oaks and eucalypts. This was the place. He’d seen them flock here at night, winging in across the plains in twos and threes. They would chatter and fuss as the sky turned orange and pink and mauve and the reflections of the trees in the riverbend darkened and disappeared. He hooked the cage on a low limb. The bird turned its head to the side and stared at him with one round, black eye.
He lit himself a fire. This was the place.