The Bus Driver Who Wanted To Be God & Other Stories

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9781594633249: The Bus Driver Who Wanted To Be God & Other Stories
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Classic warped and wonderful stories from a “genius” (The New York Times) and master storyteller.
 
Brief, intense, painfully funny, and shockingly honest, Etgar Keret’s stories are snapshots that illuminate with intelligence and wit the hidden truths of life. As with the best writers of fiction, hilarity and anguish are the twin pillars of his work. Keret covers a remarkable emotional and narrative terrain—from a father’s first lesson to his boy to a standoff between soldiers caught up in the Middle East conflict to a slice of life where nothing much happens.
 
New to Riverhead’s list, these wildly inventive, uniquely humane stories are for fans of Etgar Keret’s inimitable style and readers of transforming, brilliant fiction.

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Review:

Etgar Keret's The Bus Driver Who Wanted to Be God & Other Stories stings and thrills with fierce fables of modern life. Set in landscapes ranging from "this armpit town outside Austin, Texas" to "this village in Uzbekistan that was built right smack at the mouth of Hell," these stories lay their plots' central tensions out plainly: "Dad wouldn't buy me a Bart Simpson doll," one begins. Then they take off like little roller coasters, careening through the pathos of Denis Johnson's Jesus' Son, the clowning of David Sedaris's Barrel Fever, the in-your-face violence of Quentin Tarantino, and the bewildered alienation of Franz Kafka. But readers need not know any of Keret's sources to enjoy his stories fully. The Israeli writer's aphorisms leap off the page and lodge themselves in the mind: "There are two kinds of people, those who like to sleep next to the wall, and those who like to sleep next to the people who push them off the bed." Keret's vernacular prose is fun to read, and his vision of the world is weirdly comforting. Happiness never really flourishes, but small hopes and graces abound. --Michael Joseph Gross

About the Author:

Etgar Keret was born in Tel Aviv in 1967. He is a recipient of the French Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, a lecturer at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, and the author, most recently, of the memoir The Seven Good Years and the story collection Suddenly, a Knock on the Door. His work has appeared in The New YorkerThe Wall Street JournalThe Paris Review, and The New York Times, among many other publications, and on “This American Life,” where he is a regular contributor.

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