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McSweeney's Issue 30 (McSweeney's Quarterly Concern) Paperback – March 3, 2009


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Paperback, March 3, 2009
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McSweeney's Issue 30 (McSweeney's Quarterly Concern) + McSweeney's Issue 29 (Mcsweeney's Quarterly Concern) + McSweeney's Issue 35 (McSweeney's Quarterly Concern)
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Product Details

  • Series: McSweeney's Quarterly Concern (Book 30)
  • Paperback: 200 pages
  • Publisher: McSweeney's (March 3, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1934781223
  • ISBN-13: 978-1934781227
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.9 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #792,231 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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The characters are still very unusual, but the writing is less self-aware and showy.
SORE EYES
Overall, a great collection of stories, many of which contain memorable characters who are realistic, dimensional and relatable.
D. Thomas
If you're a fiction fan looking for an engrossing read to keep you occupied for a few hours, this is your book.
Noel

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By SORE EYES on March 12, 2009
Verified Purchase
The trend of late with McSweeney's is that the better the edition looks, the less content inside. Edition 30 isn't pretty and not one of the more "collectable" editions from an artistic perspective, but it's meaty and full of good stories that are solid and less sarcastic and flippant in tone than many of the McSweeney's collections. The characters are still very unusual, but the writing is less self-aware and showy. If you like McSweeney's sarcastic, some of that is still there in stories like "The Beginning of a Plan". But that sort of thing pales in comparison to the solid writing and character development in the excellent "Pine Cone" , "A Further Interpretation of Real Life Events" and "Retreat".

Stories included are:
Bill Cotter- Pfaff II
Nick Ekkixogloy- Stowaways
Kevin Moffett- Further Interpretation of Real Life Events
Etgar Keret-Bad Karma
Shelly Oria- The Beginning of a Plan
Michael Cera- Pinecone
Carson Mell-Diamond Aces
Matei Visniec-Madness
J. Malcolm Garcia-Cuts
Catherine Bussinger- Foothill Boulevard
Wells Tower-Retreat

An edition worth buying if you're looking for a few hours of solid reading.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D. Thomas on September 30, 2011
McSweeney's Issue 30 is solid - good stories, simple throwback design and nice gesture toward Oddi Printing, the Icelandic company that originally took care of McSweeney's printing needs.

The design is interesting - unique and uncomplicated, representative of the time that it was published (Obama taking over for Bush). If the design is light, the font is a bit chunkier, but small, thin drawings scattered throughout each story break up the text well.

Overall, a great collection of stories, many of which contain memorable characters who are realistic, dimensional and relatable. This issue contains Michael Cera's first published story ("Pinecone") and although it's a quick read and interesting with spots of genuine humor, it largely comes off as an inferior extension of Cera's acting. In some areas, descriptions and dialogue seem trite; it's difficult to see the main character at the age and mental stage he's supposed to inhabit, and for the most part, the story carries no dynamic motion that propels anything forward. It's as though this story could (and would) happen on a weekly basis in the life of the main character, Carroll Silver. The character's ranting, perhaps intended to be a mix of clever and cynical, comes off stilted and childish. Fans of Cera will see traces of his movie characters, however, and this seems to be the story's redeeming feature and, I suspect, the reason it was published at all.

The rest of the stories are excellent, including Wells Tower's "Retreat," a story originally published in McSweeney's 23 and now told from the perspective of a different character. I haven't read the original, but am very interested after reading its updated counterpart.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Noel TOP 1000 REVIEWER on August 8, 2010
This is the first issue of McSweeney's to come out after Bush's presidency and the cover says it all - REJOICE! followed by "It's too late to screw it all up, right?" on the first page. Ah, McSweeney's.

A note about the design because McSweeney's has a reputation for innovative design of their issues. Whether the issue is a newspaper, a cigar box, held together with magnets, or designed to look like junk mail, they usually do something interesting. McSweeney's 30 is simply a paperback. This is a deliberate choice as they explain on the copyright page to go back to the design of their earliest issues and to help out the Icelandic printer's they used to use back then who have fallen on hard times thanks to Icelandic bankers. It's a nice choice as the attention in this issue is on the contents not on the presentation.

Bill Cotter's "Pfaff II" is about two mental patients who fall in love and escape together.

Nick Ekkizogloy's "Stowaways" is about two stoner electricians who have to work through an emergency flooding.

Kevin Moffett's "Further Interpretations of Real-Life Events" is about a wannabe writer/teacher whose father suddenly starts writing and gets published, much to his son's dismay and jealousy.

Etgar Keret's "Bad Karma" features an insurance salesman whose near death experience helps him get more sales of life insurance than anyone else but also gave him a glimpse into a parallel world.

Michael Cera's "Pinecone" is about a washed up actor in his late thirties who yells at a fast food clerk who said she didn't like one of his movies. Surprisingly good story as I was fully expecting to dislike it thinking "stick to acting, Scott Pilgrim!".
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