Troublemakers is an often hilarious, sometimes frightening, occasionally off-the-wall collection of stories about men living on the edge. From the streets of Chicago's southwest side to the rural roads of Nebraska to the small towns of southern Illinois, these men tread a very fine line between right and wrong, love and hate, humor and horror.Each story is a Pandora's boxTroublemakers is an often hilarious, sometimes frightening, occasionally off-the-wall collection of stories about men living on the edge. From the streets of Chicago's southwest side to the rural roads of Nebraska to the small towns of southern Illinois, these men tread a very fine line between right and wrong, love and hate, humor and horror.Each story is a Pandora's box waiting to be opened: a high school boy with a new driver's license picks his brother up from jail; a UPS driver suspects his wife of having an affair but cannot find any tangible evidence of her indiscretion; an unemployed man's life begins to unravel after he discovers a dead man in a tree in his own backyard; two boys spend Halloween with an older thug; a young college teacher's patience is tested by both his annoying colleagues and the criminals who haunt his neighborhood. In story after story, McNally's troublemakers lead readers to a place no less thrilling or dangerous than the human heart itself....
|Number of Pages||:||224 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
Simply put, John McNally is a hell of a writer. In all of these stories, the characters are either in trouble, trying to avoid trouble, or compelled to rush headlong into some bad decision-making. Like a lot of us, McNally's protagonists suddenly look up and wonder how they got to where they are. In some of the stories, there is a sense of resolution; in others, a feeling that just getting to the next day is a victory in itself.
As most short-story collections by youngish writers go, this one is hit or miss. But, at least two thirds of Troublemakers is really solid, perhaps even excellent. It makes me want to read more. I will read more.
Read my review at my blog.
McNally has the amazing ability to make you care so much about characters in so few pages. Perhaps his best tool, to make you actually care.
One of my favorite books; I often use it in my fiction writing classes to show students the possibilities of the contemporary short story.
McNally's debut collection delivers the goods. Both funny and poignant. Looking forward to reading more of his work.
There are some funny stories in this collection. Overall, an enjoyable read, but not stunning.