True Love and Other Dreams of Miraculous Escape Paperback – October 24, 2018
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“What an enticing cast of characters readers get to meet here! Micah Perks writes so well of love in many of its forms and stages, and she populates her book with such a memorable crew. No one is exempt from struggle and disappointment, and yet there is always a chance for transcendence, too." - Aimee Bender, author of The Color Master and The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake
"A writer whose stories are endearingly hard headed and tender hearted, and whose characters are so very alive that they practically escape off the page when you encounter them. This collection will cure what ails you.” - Kelly Link, author of Get In Trouble and Pretty Monsters
“Beautiful, believable, disorienting. Sit down and watch the show, because I guarantee you don't know what's coming.” - David Vann, author of Bright Air Black and Aquarium
About the Author
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Micah Perks writes with exquisite awareness and subtlety about family relationships, ghosts, and yearning for a myriad of "dreams of miraculous escape." Houdini, a character in the first story (really a story-within-a-story, by someone whose family has escaped Europe and the Holocaust . . . someone who is himself on the brink of a joyful life change), becomes a figure for so many of these wonderful, lively characters, facing their own tight situations, and their visions of joyful release and balance.
I recommend this exquisite work of fiction to anyone who really loves character, language, and story -- who loves being caught up in a glorious mesh of stories, which deepen as you read and reread them.
(I also highly recommend all of Micah Perks' other books --- especially What Becomes Us! A beautiful novel playing on the captivity narrative of Mary Rowlandson, a colonial woman who was captured by Native Americans in the 17th century ---- now weaving through a contemporary, comedic and engaging love story about a woman ready for her own "dream of miraculous escape.")
The book opens its study of passion and escape with the wonderfully imagined tale of Harry Houdini’s attempt to break into the home of heiress Sarah Winchester, whose 38-year building spree was allegedly directed by ghosts and left her mansion a hodge-podge of strange rooms and dead-end staircases. That tale is followed by the fervent love story of Sadie and Daniel — she a bookstore owner and he a Chilean academic — whose desire overwhelms reality. Almost.
The stories then move in rapid order from the funny and noirish “Miraculous Escapes by Dave Tanaka” to the mysterious and mind-bending “There Once Was a Man Who Longed for a Child,” leaving a reader breathless with her own need to turn the page and get to the next story.
“True Love” was a book I couldn’t put down, and one that lingered in my mind long after I did.