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The Coast of Chicago: Stories (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

I read the last story from this book first, in a bookstore in Chicago a few years ago -  I was living there for a summer before my senior year of college, and the person I was dating picked it off the shelf, suggested that story, and wandered away. The narrative so perfectly framed that moment in my life. I read the rest the stories that summer in what now feels like a dream state. Or rather, in that dazed state of longing when you wake up from a particularly beautiful dream.

— From Madison's Picks!


The stolid landscape of Chicago suddenly turns dreamlike and otherworldly in Stuart Dybek's classic story collection. A child's collection of bottle caps becomes the tombstones of a graveyard. A lowly rightfielder's inexplicable death turns him into a martyr to baseball. Strains of Chopin floating down the tenement airshaft are transformed into a mysterious anthem of loss. Combining homely detail and heartbreakingly familiar voices with grand leaps of imagination, The Coast of Chicago is a masterpiece from one of America's most highly regarded writers.

About the Author

Stuart Dybek is the author of five books of fiction--Ecstatic Cahoots, Paper Lantern, I Sailed with Magellan, The Coast of Chicago, and Childhood and Other Neighborhoods--as well as two collections of poetry, Brass Knuckles and Streets in Their Own Ink. Dybek is the recipient of many prizes and awards, including the PEN/Malamud Award, an Arts and Letters Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Whiting Writers' Award, four O. Henry Awards, a MacArthur Fellowship, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. He is distinguished writer-in-residence at Northwestern University.

Praise For…

“Has claim to comparison with Anderson's Winesburg, Ohio and Joyce's Dubliners. . .Dybek's energetic prose produces dazzling effects.” —Chicago Sun-Times

“Moving and real and often brilliantly ambitious.” —Los Angeles Times

“A fictional world that is both ordinary and amazing.” —The New York Times

“Irresistible...Mr. Dreiser, Mr. Farrell, Mr. Bellow, Mr. Algren, please say hello to Stuart Dybek. He's one of yours.” —The Village Voice

“Establishes [Dybek] not merely as a talent but as a magician comparable to Eudora Welty and Joy Williams.” —Chicago Tribune

“Tender and unforgiving...No matter where you grew up, after reading these stories you'll have found the coast of Chicago” —San Francisco Chronicle

Product Details
ISBN: 9780312424251
ISBN-10: 0312424256
Publisher: Picador
Publication Date: April 3rd, 2004
Pages: 192
Language: English