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Gary, the Four-Eyed Fairy and Other Stories [Kindle Edition]

Frank Mundo
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Twelve interconnected short stories about the life of J.T. Glass, a Los Angeles security guard with an uncanny knack for finding trouble and falling in love--often at the same time.

In many of the stories, J.T. is challenged with moral decisions that walk the fine line between humor and tragedy. Some of the stories address J.T.'s childhood, while others deal with his utter misunderstanding of women and his relationships with them.

This special edition also includes the first chapter of The Brubury Tales, where the story of J.T. Glass continues in this adaptation of Chaucer's classic Canterbury Tales set in Los Angeles just after the 1992 riots.

Editorial Reviews


"4-stars: GARY, THE FOUR-EYED FAIRY AND OTHER STORIES is an entertaining romp, full of irreverent humor that leaves you wanting more...chronicling the life and times of J.T. Glass, a security guard armed with a sharp tongue, keen wit and vivid imagination...each story in this collection can stand on its own, but read together, the book feels more like a novel told out of chronological order, or like a puzzle that engages you, the reader, to assemble and experience the transformation from boy to man. The dialogue is crisp, the nuances are rich, most of the stories move at a fast clip, and you'll be laughing or crying most of the journey... Mundo knows how to delight and surprise, no holds barred.  He has an excellent command of story, and the courage to go dark."
"Well worth a read...A sharply observed take on the human condition, it's full of off-beat humour, life lessons and moral dilemmas." Named a "Favourite Read for April 2012" -
"When Carolyn See wrote her dissertation on the Hollywood novel in 1963, she could find only three Los Angeles writers who were not writing about the movie business. When she published her first novel in 1970, her editor told her Joan Didion was her main competition. Today, as she sorts through candidates for the anthology, she's coming across scores of new writers: Michael Jaime Becerra, whose new book, "Every Night Is Ladies' Night," is set among Latino immigrants in El Monte...Or Frank Mundo, a security guard who works the graveyard shift and has published his tales of overnight security. See guesses there may be several hundred serious writers in the region..."  - Los Angeles Times

From the Back Cover

"Ordinarily this was supposed to be the time when students were supposed to helpfully venture 'constructive criticism,' since part of the class was about learning to do just that, but there was no constructive criticism that I remember, because Frank Mundo was the kind of person who already knew how to write and what to write -- knew it in his bones. You could say his prose was perfect, and you'd be absolutely right on the money." - Carolyn See of The Washington Post (from the foreword to The Brubury Tales)

Product Details

  • File Size: 268 KB
  • Print Length: 114 pages
  • Publisher: Lunatick Trading Company (July 17, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005D7KFHI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #916,651 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nailing the "Voice" November 4, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Warning! Spoiler. (but only for one little story from this collection.)
Only read the first half of the stories but had to do a review. Enjoyed the first few stories and thought he was fantastic at conveying literary "voice." At first I thought I might find the mood too unrelentingly sombre but then I read the story called "Day at the Beach." It gives the balance and one of the most uplifting stories I've read. They say that one of the greatest skills an author can possess is to nail the "voice" of childhood. Frank Mundo has done it in this story. It will haunt me for a long time in a delightful way. If I were still teaching I'd go straight to school and try this one out on kids. I think they'd love all the BS from the big brother. I reckon they'd totally crack up. But don't get me wrong - these stories are for adults, though kids might enjoy that one.
The unpredictability! After all the preceding stories, I thought the big brother intended to half drown him. WRONG! These kids are so real, so cool and so lovable yet wicked. I'm a convert.
The "sensing" of the sea is perfect. This so nails the wildness, the scariness, the beauty of the ocean and all through the wondering eyes of childhood.
Now I'm off to read the stories I haven't even got to yet.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is ostensibly a series of short stories, but because of the common theme and character of the narrator J.T. Glass, it feels much more like a novel. The reader is led through a series of situations J.T. finds himself in --- sometimes from childhood, sometimes adolescence, and sometimes adulthood --- and sees those situations through J.T.'s eyes. Those eyes are ironic, intelligent, and full of humor about things that would otherwise be impossible to cope with.

Reading this book is something of an emotional adventure. The situations are so shocking, and so varied, that there's never a point at which you can guess what's coming next. But the heart of the book --- the tone which is maintained throughout --- is kind enough that the ride can be endured, and is worth going on.

Oh, and most importantly. This book is written with an artist's eye (a fact which is hinted at in the very first story). Phrases are used symmetrically, popping up meaning one thing at one moment, and something much richer at another. The language, the pacing, and the mood are all established carefully.

If you ignore the attention poured into it, the end result is a book which reads smoothly and easily. If you care to, though, it's also a book worth studying.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars These stories are so full of Soul! September 9, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I was totally drawn into these realistic, heartwarmingly, and sometimes tragic human stories. I suspect these are semi-autobiographic; they are so full of soul. These are stories from J. T. Glass' life, a night security guard in Los Angeles, who has ambitions to be a writer. Frank Mundo has definitely succeeded here in this book. I look forward to reading The Brubury Tales, although I must admit that I am a little intimidated by his utilizing iambic pentameter. I will most likely read anything Frank Mundo writes; he has real talent, and a great future ahead of him.

edited to correct a word, LOL, I really do need an editor!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant glimpses of a life September 20, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Mundo offers brilliant glimpses of moments in life of his J.T., a security guard. Some are life defining, some fraught with moral dilemma, some just simple but powerful tableaus likely to stay etched in memory as if lighted by a lightning. As each of these moments is different in significance and consequences, so the stories differ in mood and voice, but every one of them is carefully crafted, expressive but unembellished, a perfect reflection of those episodes.

Highly recommended!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
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A smart rendering of the modern human condition. I laughed out loud through much of it - notwithstanding the descriptive parts (especially the lizard doing push-ups and boric acid-snorting roaches.) Perfect!
A great read.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully written February 4, 2012
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This is a series of short tales based upon the same character, J T, as he stumbles his way through life. From childhood to adulthood, you are exposed to every sort of intimate thought as he tells stories of moral dilemmas, embarrassing moments, and other memorable times. You watch as he wrestles with his own conscience while handling varying degrees of stress in everyday life.

Frank Mundo's writing style is pure art, with an incredible ability to see and describe every nuance so perfectly that he forces the reader to experience the emotions, picture the setting, and live the story. He easily switches from humor to darkness, and can elicit laugh-out-loud chuckles as well as tears.

The exquisite writing, outstanding editing, and interesting stories make this a must read. Job well done, Mr. Mundo - bravo!!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great slices of life April 19, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This set of great short stories. They are about the life and times of J.T., a security guard. If you think this is a boring sort of protagonist, then you must rethink it all over and wait to read these tales! Be warned: some are heart-warming, others sad... some poigant. One of them even managed to offend my personal set of beliefs (I simply refuse to share a particular viewpoint with the author), but even in spite of that these tales are outstanding pieces of work. You can easily identify with J.T. (The minute he mentioned chocolate syrope and its uses... WHAM! Instant Identification!) and many of those who have been bullied, ignored and permanently been turned down for dates in high school (like moi!) will find the main central tale (the one of Gary, which names this book) quite riveting.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars No Fairies! Just Truly Real People!
I've never been a fan of short stories but this collection is different. Each story is told from the perspective of J.T. Glass, an engaging L.A. security guard. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Carla
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful quick read
I am still reading Mr. Mundo's collection of short stories and am so glad that I picked this book up. The stories are quick, to the point and don't disappoint. Read more
Published on December 5, 2012 by MaryAnn H.
4.0 out of 5 stars Made me laugh -
A fun book and a quick read. I'd definately recommend this book or others by this author to friends. Would seek out this author again.
Published on November 16, 2012 by K. Lawrence
4.0 out of 5 stars Bittersweet...
After starting off with a bologna-smelling little girl who picked at her butt, it wasn't too hard to get a kick out of Mr. Mundo's writing style. Read more
Published on April 4, 2012 by Rebecca Stroud
5.0 out of 5 stars A Literary Achievement!
I just finished, Gary, the Four-Eyed Fairy and think it's brilliant. It is literary genius! Although written with a fair amount of humor, the stories within these pages have a... Read more
Published on February 27, 2012 by Linell Jeppsen
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent set of stories.
I picked this book up purely on the strength of the title and after reading the first two stories, I came back and had a quick flick through the reviews, because I hadn't bothered... Read more
Published on January 16, 2012 by J Bryden Lloyd
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More About the Author

Frank Mundo is a full-time writer in Los Angeles. He has a BA in English from UCLA, where he also completed the Creative Writing Program. His stories, poetry, and essays have appeared in dozens of journals, magazines and anthologies in print and online. For over a decade, Mr. Mundo has also been reviewing books for the San Diego Union-Tribune, The New York Journal of Books, Westside Today, The Swamp, The Journal of Cultural Conversation and many more. Frank Mundo is the author of the award-winning novel in verse, The Brubury Tales (foreword by bestselling author and critic Carolyn See), a modern version of The Canterbury Tales, set in Los Angeles; and Gary, the Four-Eyed Fairy and Other Stories, an interconnected collection of his very best short stories published over the last 15 years. Frank's latest book, Different, is an illustrated novella for adults that reimagines Kafka's Metamorphosis and Alice in Wonderland.


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