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A very well written and highly amusing, clever book, and a great introduction to Saunders' work, which I had never read before this. The title story is definitely the best, and the book is worth buying just to read it - I am a writer myself and was left completely in awe (and completely envious) when I tried to wrap my head around Saunders' technique. The other stories never quite lived up to Pastoralia, some of them felt as if they needed to be fleshed out or developed a little deeper, but they are still very enjoyable to read. I was extremely impressed by Saunders' boldness and ingenuity, and look forward to reading more of his work.
I love George Saunders' writing, and The Tenth of December may be one of my favourite books of last year. These stories are not near as gut wrenching, although that cannot be said of "The End of FIRPO in the world." The story "Sea Oak" is worth the price of admission alone.
Vous refermez ce recueil de six nouvelles et vous vous sentez une autre personne, meilleure, plus "décente". Et vous en sortez dans l'hilarité. Avec mordant, intelligence, compassion, originalité et humour, Saunders nous livre une collection de paraboles, de textes satiriques, d'une imagination sans limite, parfois ridicules, émouvants, prodigues de métaphores. Il nous entraîne à 1000 lieues de la réalité, on est en plein rêve ou en plein délire, puis on tourne la page et il se montre le chroniqueur le plus pointu d'une certaine 'corporate America'. On assimile parfois Saunders à Vonnegut; j'y retrouve plutôt la tendresse freaky de Flannery O'Connor.
I seem to be out of step with the other reviewers who loved this. It might be down to personal preference of style but I spent each story waiting a) for an interesting character; b) for something to happen. I read this on the train, so it killed a few minutes, but I wouldn't recommend it. I'm with the other reviewer who said that the stories feel like they are the output of a creative writing class. The stories reminded me of those "arty" type films where the director is trying to hard to say something interesting about the human condition but ends up being boring.