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These stories tantalize by bordering the darker sides of human sexuality. In exploring these darker venues, Krause has been able to illuminate humanity in general - through fleeting forays into cruelty and revenge, or, say, uncertainty and masochism. You will find stories ranging from a man falling into an increasingly bizarre relationship with a German couple in their country home ("The Brown Shirt"), to a Japanese man who cannot rid himself of the childhood memory of spying on a pair making violent love ("Taro"), to an orphan intrigued by shoes ("Shoe Polish"). All of Krause's characters share obsession, and while their obsessions may seem "insignificant" to outsiders, they reflect not so insignificant political and religious obsessions that have recently and historically caused so much global harm.
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Richard Krause teaches English at Somerset Community College.From Booklist:
Krause's collection of stories is a haunting exploration of humanity in its weakest but not necessarily most tender moments. The characters Krause explores find their obsessions just short of crippling. There is the opponent of a chess-playing dwarf and a shortchanged cab driver, both obsessed with size. There is the child of an abusive home, obsessed with bug extermination. There are the true obsessive-compulsives, focused on toothpaste or cleanliness or completely ridding a town square of pigeons. Breaking through only occasionally are their foils, the spouse attempting to understand, the old woman who feeds the birds. Despite that, Krause's stories--often more detailed character sketches than truly plot-driven stories--are at base disturbing, and yet you can't look away. There is the pressing sense that one might learn something, however troubling, from the almost universally pitiful men and women he introduces. This is dense, unsettling fiction--but beautifully wrought. Debi Lewis
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Book Description Livingston Pr, 2003. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M1931982074
Book Description Livingston Pr, 2003. Paperback. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX1931982074