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The Sense of Touch by [Parsons, Ron]
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The Sense of Touch Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

The quiet plains of the North Country serve as a perfect backdrop for Parsons' moving debut, a collection of short stories whose characters often live deeply solitary, if not always lonely, lives.

--Kirkus Reviews - Best Books of 2014 (starred review)

Eloquently written and replete with a continual stream of un-hackneyed twists and turns, Parsons' collection is superbly crafted. Engaging, riveting, and at times, mind-boggling, The Sense of Touch is earmarked to become a literary classic.

-- San Francisco Book Review (five-star review)

Parsons has made himself a man to watch in the literary world. Each of these stories is as thrilling as the next.

--Portland Book Review (five-star review)

Ron Parsons' stellar debut collection is full of stories as changeable and unpredictable as a Midwestern springtime, as fresh and clear as a hidden waterfall, as sudden and perplexing as an unsolved murder. At once playful and deadly serious, hilarious and sad, these are the kinds of stories that will involve your own memory even as they show you a world you've likely never seen.

--Peter Geye, author of The Lighthouse Road


[I]t is clear that Parsons knows the land he mines beyond the superficial sights, sounds, and smells, down to the feeling, the touch. And in this collection, he explores those who live and love in the cold and beautiful Midwest, all the way to their bones.

--ForeWord Reviews (five-star review)

These tales are the winsome hissing of busy signals lisping in the icy nicely nice neighborhoods of the missing Midwest at the intersection of polite delight and absolute zero at the bone.

--Michael Martone, author of Four for a Quarter

About the Author

RON PARSONS is a writer living in Sioux Falls. Born in Michigan and raised in South Dakota, he was inspired to begin writing fiction in Minneapolis while attending the University of Minnesota. His short stories have appeared in literary magazines and venues such as The Gettysburg Review, Indiana Review, Storyville App, The Briar Cliff Review, Flyway, and The Onion.

THE SENSE OF TOUCH, his debut collection of stories, was released by Aqueous Books in 2013.

Product Details

  • File Size: 338 KB
  • Print Length: 252 pages
  • Publisher: Aqueous Books (April 30, 2013)
  • Publication Date: April 30, 2013
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00CLSUTWI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #975,668 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a collection of stories, most of which are in part set within the cold and snow of the Northern states. There is a sense of dreaminess brought on by the silence of snow. The stories are wonderful, written in plain language about ordinary people and the strangeness of their lives. The last story is my favorite, another ordinary person living a happy life when a sudden act makes everything different. The story The Black Hills demonstrates how, sometimes unknowingly and sometimes fully aware, we make choices we know may be hurtful to others, but make them still, not wanting to cause pain, but going ahead as if unknowing. The author examines childhood's assumption that everything will always be the same and the child's powerlessness when change occurs. All in all I highly recommend this collection, it is beautifully written and completely human.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Excellent book, the stories are kind of weird and juicy sometimes, well written and keep the lecturer wanted to know more.
I bought this book for a vacation and could not put it down.
The thread to all the stories is how some experiences (people in particular) leaves us not the same and naked you think.
Was sad when I finished the book, wanted to read more stories.
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Format: Paperback
The Sense of Touch is a set of eight extraordinary sketch stories about ordinary midwestern people. Principally set in the areas where rising author Parsons spent much of his time, namely Michigan, Minnesota, and South Dakota, the theme of this debut collection centers on those who are trying to find their place in the world. Each sketch's environs and characters are colorfully described with a plethora of apt and catchy metaphors and similes. Featuring, at the very least, one person who is figuring out life's path amid random circumstances, each narrative is left open ended – a classic trait that leaves readers to draw their own conclusions.

Parsons, a full-time attorney who squeezes in writing during his free time, states on his website (http://ronparsonswriter.com/index/) that his first published book has been a process, which "started in college" and was "twenty years in the making." Written either in first or third person, many from this collection were submissions that made their initial appearance in various literary magazines, "such as The Gettysburg Review, Indiana Review, The Briar Cliff Review, Flyway, and The Onion," and one that was "named one of two runner's up for the David Schwarz Fiction Prize." Parsons, whose list of influences include a full list of literary favorites, could have easily incorporated Rod Serling in the mix – based on a couple of his stories.

"Beginning with Minneapolis" relays the story of Waylon Baker and his estranged relationship with his ex-wife, Evie, who unexpectedly comes back into his life. Daniel visits a somewhat disgruntled blind friend, Ed, in "The Black Hills." Ed hopes that his life is turning out for the better, now that he has a live-in girlfriend – or so he thinks.
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Format: Kindle Edition
4.5 stars

Did I enjoy this book: I did.

The Sense of Touch is a collection of short stories. And it’s unlike anything I’ve read before – ever. It’s beautifully written. Mr. Parsons’ writing style alone could make just about any story interesting.

Each story is unpredictable, unbelievable, and confusing. And somehow, he makes them all thoroughly entertaining. I got to the end of each story and thought, “huh?” But immediately went on to the next story wondering how he was going to top the last one.

I’m pretty sure Mr. Parsons breaks just about every rule of creative writing and actually manages to pull it off. I’m not sure if he’s a brilliant cutting edge artistic force in literature or just some really weird guy who’s managed to capture my imagination. But I know I’ll be on the look-out for his next book just to see where he’s going next.

Would I recommend it: Yes.

Will I read it again: Probably not.

As reviewed by Belinda at Every Free Chance Book Reviews.

(I received a copy of this book for review purposes.)
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Format: Paperback
I've always loved short story collections, and this book is one of the best I've read so far. Ron Parsons is a great story teller. There are eight stories, they are all different, and they all gave me a wide range of emotions. The stories are about friendship, being the outcast in school, loss, betrayal and love. I felt a lot of emotions while reading this book. Some stores are sad, some are funny and some left me wanting to know more.

This is the debut for this author, and I plan on reading anything else he publishes. I love his writing style and the way he makes you "feel" for the characters.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"The Sense of Touch," by author Ron Parsons

The Sense of Touch by author Ron Parsons dives passionately and affectionately into the typical problematic human relations. These eight short stories are collected into a scene for each reader’s own remembered past upon their own experiences. The eight stories unfold to tell of friendships, loves, loss and betrayals, ranging from the emotional scale of sad to funny. Each of these wonderfully written stories, come from an original thought, an emotional telling and a rather entertaining perspective. The characters involved into the stories, were also expressive, able to be related to, and downright level with the emotional gist of human nature. If the weather has got you down and stuck indoors, grab The Sense of Touch by Ron Parsons and kick back on your favorite chair and grab a blanket, for this one will be a fictional great read that warms the heart and the soul.
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