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The Reasons I Won't Be Coming Paperback – Bargain Price, December 5, 2006
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Top Customer Reviews
I found all nine to be good stories, and, as other reviewers have pointed out, the final piece was an excellent representation, and perhaps even a stand-alone work, but for me, the story that was the most powerful and complete was "I Was Only in a Childish Way Connected to the Established Order." Besides being well crafted, with most of the characters highly developed, it was a story describing the allusiveness of sanity. Examining what is crazy, and what is normal through the eyes of a poet is nothing new, but here Perlman takes a fresh approach, moving from a blissful city life to the stress and strain of a country existence.
Perlman's writing follows in the footsteps of authors like Cheever and Carver, men who throw their ten cents in but make it look like two. These are the kinds of works that don't fly over the head, but that are also much deeper and more dangerous than they initially seem. As a result, people don't feel alienated by the text, nor do the intelligentsia feel slighted by the material.
Short stories are tough acts for novelists, though. Even if Perlman's deft strokes show in the tales of this book, his limitations are likewise revealed. How to contain, in a handful of pages, the breadth and beauty that these guys more artfully employ in hundreds of pages or more? Below is a brief list of the stories, in order of accomplishment.
1 Star - MANSLAUGHTER - An overlong excuse for Perlman to use the technical knowledge he has gained in his work as a barrister. The fluctuating narratorial threads and the ambivalent emotion of the piece showcase the post-modern emotion behind concepts like "guilt" and "justice," but the overall product is bloated, unwieldy, and boring in the way of uber-technical curios.Read more ›
Reading this collection I noticed something about this author I've come to love, and that is that he tends to have a one track mind when it comes to his characters. Every narrator, that aside from the one in `In the Time of the Dinosaur', seems to be these smart literary lost souls who can never find the right person who understands them. It can get somewhat redundant and disappointing. That aside, one can't ignore this man's mastery of the English language. Everything is written so elegantly that you're compelled to enjoy it even if you don't really understand it.
He starts things off on a good note, with `Good Morning, Again', and what I liked about this opening story is that it was short and to the point, grabbed your interest and made you want to read more. It describes one mans feelings after spending the night for the first time with a new lover, how she compares to his former flame and whether or not he wishes to continue down the road to a relationship with this younger woman. It's very real and very relatable. Again, Perlman's writing is just so absorbing.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I really like this author. His books are quite thought provoking. Some of the stories are quite similar though so I have only read mid way into the book so far.Published 17 months ago by kamjay
I was a huge fan of Seven Types of Ambiguity, so I thought I'd give this book a shot. I literally could not put it down. Read morePublished on March 27, 2013 by Rain8mk
Despite the fact that I haven't read front to back, the few stories I read we're worth me saying this is a book worth picking up.Published on February 8, 2013 by Danny Ace
Well written but a little on the dark side for me. I don't have 9 more words for this review.Published on January 8, 2013 by MsBrisVegas
This was a masterful book. I found myself sucked into each of the stories. The characters were real, and complex. Read morePublished on February 27, 2012 by Joyce L. Tompsett
I am a huge short story fan and was excited to pick this book up. I hadn't heard of it previously but reviews seemed good enough and I quite liked the title. Read morePublished on July 12, 2010 by T. Smith
While it's easy to find books about women who are treated badly by the men in their lives, Elliot Perlman flips the script by writing about the dashed hopes and faded impressions... Read morePublished on April 2, 2008 by Meghan
I recently read a book review which said, to paraphrase, that love can have happy endings, but love stories cannot. Read morePublished on March 1, 2008 by Bookcrazed