Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
Bark: Stories Hardcover – Deckle Edge, February 25, 2014
|New from||Used from|
Top 20 lists in Books
View the top 20 best sellers of all time, the most reviewed books of all time and some of our editors' favorite picks. Learn more
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
An Amazon Best Book of the Month, March 2014: Here’s a reason Lorrie Moore is so beloved by her baby boomer brethren: she’s smart, she’s funny, her eye is even sharper than her tongue. In Bark, her latest collection of stories, all those qualities are well on display. “He had never been involved with the mentally ill before,” she writes of her mid-life anti-hero in the (sort-of) title story, "Debarking." "[B]ut he now felt more than ever that there should be strong international laws against them being too good looking.” Acerbic? Check. Knowing? Check. Says out loud on the page what we less talented, less observant mere mortals wish we could form so well in thought? Check. Check. Check. The only reason not to read these seven stories is that, perhaps, they’re just too accurate and perceptive about the way we live now--but then, why would you ever want to read stories that were anything else? --Sara Nelson
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Some have noted that some of the stories seem dated. Yes, they do. It's a fair point. Stories of the Democratic convention of 2008 or the war in Iraq may eventually pale, but I think they're still fresh enough not to seem hopelessly antiquated.
It's been noted that the book is short. Yes, and I wish it were longer. But I don't know that it's fair to knock a book for its length if the quality is there. I believe it is here.
The endings have been faulted here. I have to confess that I don't really understand this complaint. One of the many beauties of the short story is the diversity of endings. Sometimes, short stories wrap everything up with a nice bow. Other times, they simply end. And there are a variety of possibilities in between. I did not have a problem with the endings.
Some have said that these stories don't represent Moore at her best. Agreed. But even Moore at less than her best is wonderful to read. Indeed, her stories always (including here) seem welcoming. As someone else put it, and I second the point, Moore is a master at drawing you in, at giving you a full character in a paragraph. A student of the craft of short story writing would do well to study these, and those who simply enjoy reading should be rewarded.Read more ›
Like most collections, Bark has some hits and misses so I find it absurd to tack off stars if a few stories don't rise to the level of excellence that I expect from a master like Moore. And also it is true, as other reviewers have written, that some of the stories feel over a decade old.
But having said that there are enough highlights in this book to make it compelling reading and worthy of recommending. My very favorite story, the first one, "Debarking," is about a romance between a sympathetic, nebbish, neurotic divorcee Ira and Zora who has a mind-baffling, at times ambiguous, at times disturbing relationship with her teenage son that is so unsavory on so many levels that it impedes Zora's ability to carry on a real relationship with Ira or any man. It's hard to know how pathological Zora's connection is with her son but we are left with layers of ambiguity to sift through in a 37-page story that had me wanting for more, perhaps a 150-page novella.
Other stories with similar power are "Wings," about a stagnant couple who haven't grown beyond their years of playing "rock stars," and the final story, suggestive of her vintage works, the collection's funniest tale, "Thank You for Having Me," which takes place at a country wedding in which the musician is the ex husband of the bride.
Getting a collection in which I like a little more than half the stories which are better than most collections out there compels me to give this book a very high recommendation.
This is not to say that I failed to laugh out loud on occasion. I concede that she enjoys a measure of success as a stand-up comic.
However, if you're a Lorrie Moore fan, you should definitely read this. Her voice is still there with her quirky humor that feels so real. The characters are, for the most part, the types of characters you'd expect from Lorrie Moore's writing and I did find myself laughing and saying "Yes!" often, which is what I love about Moore. I just didn't feel that way throughout the entire book, like I did with Birds of America.
I'll read anything from Lorrie Moore and I hope she comes out with another book soon!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I rarely read short stories, but I gave this collection a try because I remember reading Lorrie Moore's Birds of America back in the last century. Read morePublished 24 days ago by Nanohiker
Rather a dark and depressing book. A bit too real and sad at times.Published 1 month ago by Ruth Ann Derr
Looking at the other reviews of this short story collection, it is clear that BARK has generated a good deal of divisive opinion. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Dr. Laurence Raw
Each story was unreadable with no story, no climax, completely disappointing.Published 6 months ago by Gillette18041
This book contains eight stories, some better than others, two long, six short. The characters are all unlikeable and boring. Read morePublished 6 months ago by josephine briggs