She has been hailed by Michael Chabon as “the most darkly playful voice in American fiction” and by Neil Gaiman as “a national treasure.” Now Kelly Link’s eagerly awaited new collection—her first for adult readers in a decade—proves indelibly that this bewitchingly original writer is among the finest we have.
Link has won an ardent following for her ability, with each new short story, to take readers deeply into an unforgettable, brilliantly constructed fictional universe. The nine exquisite examples in this collection show her in full command of her formidable powers. In “The Summer People,” a young girl in rural North Carolina serves as uneasy caretaker to the mysterious, never-quite-glimpsed visitors who inhabit the cottage behind her house. In “I Can See Right Through You,” a middle-aged movie star makes a disturbing trip to the Florida swamp where his former on- and off-screen love interest is shooting a ghost-hunting reality show. In “The New Boyfriend,” a suburban slumber party takes an unusual turn, and a teenage friendship is tested, when the spoiled birthday girl opens her big present: a life-size animated doll.
Hurricanes, astronauts, evil twins, bootleggers, Ouija boards, iguanas, The Wizard of Oz, superheroes, the Pyramids . . . These are just some of the talismans of an imagination as capacious and as full of wonder as that of any writer today. But as fantastical as these stories can be, they are always grounded by sly humor and an innate generosity of feeling for the frailty—and the hidden strengths—of human beings. In Get in Trouble, this one-of-a-kind talent expands the boundaries of what short fiction can do.
Advance praise for Get in Trouble
“Kelly Link is the author whose books I would take to the proverbial desert island. Link’s work is always darkly funny, sexy, frightening, and truly weird—she can dismantle and remake the world in a paragraph. Get in Trouble offers further proof that she belongs on every reader’s bookshelf.”—Karen Russell
“Get in Trouble contains some of Link’s best writing yet. These are not so much small fictions as windows onto entire worlds. This is a brilliant, giddying read.”—Sarah Waters
“Kelly Link is one of my all-time favorite writers. You know who else would love her? Kafka and Lewis Carroll. Like them, she knows the things the rest of us don’t. But she also knows how to make well-known heartbreaks glow with strange new lights.”—Arthur Phillips
“Kelly Link’s prose is conveyed in details so startling and fine that you work up a sweat just waiting for the next sentence to land. This is why we read, crave, need, can’t live without short stories.”—Téa Obreht
“Kelly Link is inimitable. Her stories are like nothing else, dark yet sparkling with her unique brand of fairy dust. This is the most marvelous kind of trouble to get in.”—Erin Morgenstern
“Every one of the stories in this collection is like a one-of-a-kind jack-in-the-box. How does Kelly Link understand our pains and longings and memories and even our futures so well?”—Yiyun Li
“Close your mouth and get out of the way, because here comes Kelly Link, than whom no one is better.”—Peter Straub
“The stories in Get In Trouble confirm once again that Kelly Link is a modern virtuoso of the form—playful and subversive required reading for anyone who loves short fiction.”—Jeff VanderMeer
From the Hardcover edition.