One of those days my mailman earns the nice tip at the end of the year - 7 items in 6 packages causing him to make a second trip just to my driveway.
The new issue of Glimmer Train arrived, issue 80 (pretty impressive number if you think about it for a second or two). I look forward to Victoria Barrett's interview with Debra Monroe, and the story by Daniel Torday for beginners.
The Spring 1990 issue of The Review of Contemporary Fiction--Joseph McElroy arrived as well, having been purchased from Dalkey Archive. There are 22 essays on, or by, McElroy in this issue and I'll remember to re-read Garth Risk Hallberg's appreciation of Women and Men as well. McElroy's a writer I came to last year when his most recent story collection was published and I've enjoyed everything I've been able to dig up since--now I'll let these wise writers explain to me what it was that led to my enjoyment.
Jonathan Baumbach fills out the rest of the packages as I finish up reading his backlist. First up is The Return of Service (University of Illinois Press, 1979). This was one of the four collections they published that year in their Illinois Short Fiction Series (if you run across any of these in used stores, snap them up, they had great tastes--two of the others from 1979 were Jean Thompson's debut collection and one from Gladys Swan).
Next from Baumbach, the novel, my father more or less (Fiction Collective, 1982). An interesting looking cover and a book with NO jacket copy about the current title, just great words about his prevous works.
Separate Hours (Fiction Collective Two, 1990) described as "A disturbingly honest, elegantly imagined unveiling of the way truth becomes elusive in a long-term relationship, Separate Hours is a love story about the betrayal of love."
Then comes D-Tours (Fiction Collective Two, 1998), a novel inspired by a photograph series done by his son, in this one, Baumbach uses his extensive knowledge on film (he's also a film critic) to create a novel with many stories told by the narrator.
And the mailman wrapped things up by dropping off a copy of B--a novel (Lofi Press, 2002). Who is B? From the back cover: "Thenovel that takes his initial offers 14 ways of looking at Baumbach's poet-protagonist, an intellectual's Bukowski, 14 narrative ariationson the distorting mirror, calling into question the validity, even the importance, of truth in memory.