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Tenth of December [Kindle Edition]

George Saunders
5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (3 Kundenrezensionen)

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Praise for Tenth of December
“The best book you’ll read this year.”The New York Times Magazine
“A feat of inventiveness . . . This eclectic collection never ceases to delight with its at times absurd, surreal, and darkly humorous look at very serious subjects. . . . George Saunders makes you feel as though you are reading fiction for the first time.”—Khaled Hosseini, author of The Kite Runner
“The best short-story writer in English—not ‘one of,’ not ‘arguably,’ but the Best.”—Mary Karr, Time
“A visceral and moving act of storytelling . . . No one writes more powerfully than George Saunders about the lost, the unlucky, the disenfranchised.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
“Saunders’s startling, dreamlike stories leave you feeling newly awakened to the world.”People
“It’s no exaggeration to say that short story master George Saunders helped change the trajectory of American fiction.”The Wall Street Journal
“An irresistible mix of humor and humanity . . . that will make you beam with unmitigated glee. [Grade:] A”Entertainment Weekly
“Saunders captures the fragmented rhythms, disjointed sensory input, and wildly absurd realities of the twenty-first century experience like no other writer.”The Boston Globe
Tenth of December shows George Saunders at his most subversive, hilarious, and emotionally piercing. Few writers can encompass that range of adjectives, but Saunders is a true original—restlessly inventive, yet deeply humane.”—Jennifer Egan, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of A Visit from the Goon Squad
“George Saunders is a complete original, unlike anyone else, thank god—and yet still he manages to be the rightful heir to three other complete American originals—Barthelme (the lyricism, the playfulness), Vonnegut (the outrage, the wit, the scope), and Twain (the common sense, the exasperation). There is no author I recommend to people more often—for ten years I’ve urged George Saunders onto everyone and everyone. You want funny? Saunders is your man. You want emotional heft? Saunders again. You want stories that are actually about something—stories that again and again get to the meat of matters of life and death and justice and country? Saunders. There is no one better, no one more essential to our national sense of self and sanity.”—Dave Eggers, author of A Hologram for the King
Praise for George Saunders
“Not since Twain has America produced a satirist this funny.”—Zadie Smith
“George Saunders makes the all-but-impossible look effortless. We’re lucky to have him.”—Jonathan Franzen
“An astoundingly tuned voice—graceful, dark, authentic, and funny—telling just the kinds of stories we need to get us through these times.”—Thomas Pynchon

“Saunders is a writer of arresting brilliance and originality, with a sure sense of his material and apparently inexhaustible resources of voice. . . . Scary, hilarious, and unforgettable.”—Tobias Wolff
“A multifaceted writer, very easy on the surface to pin down but incredibly difficult once you actually read him with any depth.”—Joshua Ferris
“Saunders’s satiric vision of America is dark and demented; it’s also ferocious and funny.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
“George Saunders is so funny and inventive he makes you love words and so wide-eyed wistful he talks you into loving people.”—Sarah Vowell




George Saunders’s most wryly hilarious and disturbing collection yet, Tenth of December illuminates human experience and explores figures lost in a labyrinth of troubling preoccupations. A family member recollects a backyard pole dressed for all occasions; Jeff faces horrifying ultimatums and the prospect of DarkenfloxxTM in some unusual drug trials; and Al Roosten hides his own internal monologue behind a winning smile that he hopes will make him popular. With dark visions of the future riffing against ghosts of the past and the ever-settling present, this collection sings with astonishing charm and intensity.


  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 566 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 271 Seiten
  • ISBN-Quelle für Seitenzahl: 140883734X
  • Verlag: Bloomsbury Publishing; Auflage: 1 (3. Januar 2013)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B0093K1QEC
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Nicht aktiviert
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (3 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #56.161 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)

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5.0 von 5 Sternen Genius George Saunders 1. Mai 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
I am so grateful to the journalists of the Spiegel because their review of this collection of stories led me to discover this wonderfully talented writer. Saunders can conjure up a whole different world by describing it from the point of view of .... well, rather strange characters. But all of them rendered absolutely believable. If you need proof that words can take you places you did not know existed, Saunders is your man. If I had to compare him to a German writer, I'd pick Kehlmann and the "Ruhm"-stories, but Saunders is even more imaginative.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen superb 4. Juli 2014
Von musik7
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
valid for six stars. no paragon over years. deeply moving, convincing, thrilling, Can't be red before sleep. Expresses the unexpressable.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen nicht zufrieden mit dem buch 27. Mai 2014
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
buch hat nicht meinen erwartungen entsprochen. ein teil der verschiedenen geschichten ist für mich nicht nachvollziehbar und dies hat mich von diesem schriftsteller sehr enttäuscht.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 3.4 von 5 Sternen  855 Rezensionen
218 von 257 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Indispensable 27. Dezember 2012
Von K. Polzin - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts (Was ist das?)
Update: One story that was left out of this collection, "Fox 8: A Story," has been released as a Kindle Single. It's brilliant - very funny, but also touching.

George Saunders is my favorite writer, so this review is biased. An Amazon reviewer said these stories left him/her feeling disturbed and uncomfortable. That is exactly what I enjoy about them. I think that means that the writer is reaching the reader, and that something is being said in the stories.

Saunders' stories are great because they are in tune with the experience of living today. I find them very entertaining, but also cathartic, because they bring expression to things that I feel and experience but that few are able to express.

Flannery O'Connor wrote "The way to despair is to refuse to have any kind of experience, and the novel, of course, is a way to have experience." Great writing can be as affecting as experience, which can be uncomfortable and disturbing.
307 von 389 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Too dark and gloomy for me 27. Oktober 2012
Von K. Bunker - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts (Was ist das?)
I found it interesting that this book places the only two somewhat upbeat stories in the collection at the beginning and the end, as if the editor thought that doing this might help to disguise the unremitting darkness of the stories that make up most of the book. I'm afraid the effect is more along the lines of a gloom sandwich, in which the relatively upbeat slices of bread do little to mask the depressive filling.

Of course, my reaction is largely a matter of personal taste. I think George Saunders is a remarkable writer and a true artist, but for me, there's just too much darkness and ugliness in this collection to stomach.

Some notes on selected stories:

"Victory Lap" is the opening story, and therefor one of the two fairly upbeat pieces I mentioned. It indulges in an engaging playfulness with language (as do most of the stories in this collection, to some extent), but apart from that I found it a story with unrealistic characters in an unrealistic situation that comes to an unrealistic conclusion.

"Puppies" extends that playfulness with language into the realm of just-plain-hard-to-read. I was reminded of a recent quote from Booker Prize judge Peter Strothard, stating that literary works of art "have to offer a degree of resistance." This story offers resistance in spades, and in return for chewing through that resistance you get one of the most gruelingly dark stories I've ever read. In this story and a few others, it feels to me that Saunders is approaching outright sadism toward his characters.

"Escape from Spiderhead" is another example of this. It's a piece of dark-science-fiction-meets-literary-fiction of the sort that would have been at home in a "New Wave" SF anthology of the late 60s such as Harlan Ellison's Dangerous Visions. I think the darkness might be a bit too heavy even for Harlan Ellison's taste, however.

"Home" continues the grim and depressing tone, but for a change I felt it had a sense of genuine human life amidst the darkness. I found it reminiscent of Raymond Carver, though not distilled down to its concentrated 150-proof essence the way Carver would have done.

"Tenth of December" was selected for this year's Best American Short Stories, and I think it's the best piece in this book. It's the final story, and like "Victory Lap," somewhat less depressing than the bulk of the collection. It's also cleverly crafted and has two interesting main characters. But it's notable that one of the most cheerful stories in this book has a terminal cancer patient as one of its protagonists.

After reading this collection I have a lot of respect for Saunders as a writer, and I know from other stories of his that he can be somewhat upbeat and even comic. But from now on I'll approach everything he writes with a deep wariness, afraid that at any moment it might explode into a smothering pall of gloom and despair.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Morbid, zany, touching, and original 9. Januar 2013
Von TChris - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
Sometimes morbid, sometimes zany, often touching, and always original, the stories collected in Tenth of December are written in a light, conversational style -- typically the kind of conversation you'd have with someone who is a little dim -- that conceals their deeper meaning. Many of the characters are like the parents or children you're glad you never had.

My favorite story, "Victory Lap," begins in the mind of Alison, a fifteen-year-old girl whose internal commentary on Eleanor Roosevelt, her ethics teacher's husband's affair, her own ignorance, and the dorkiness of Kyle Boot is, to use Alison's favorite word, awesome. The story then shifts to the scattered mind of Kyle Boot (favorite word: "gar"), whose chance of pleasing his anal-retentive father is nil and whose thoughts are filled with imaginative curses that he would never dare say out loud. When Kyle sees a man trying to kidnap Alison, he must choose between intervening and finishing his chores. The story develops a new layer of oddness when we enter the mind of the kidnapper. The ending is surprisingly sweet as humor and horror give way to karma.

The title story is another standout. Robin is a pale, blubberish boy who invents his own martial arts system (Deadly Forearms) to fight the Nethers. Eber, old and rail-thin, no longer seems real to himself. Both Robin and Eber constantly engage in imagined conversations. When Robin spots Eber (thinking he may be a Nether) walking around a frozen pond, Robin makes it his heroic mission to deliver Eber's coat to him without realizing why Eber left the coat behind. The story is a bittersweet combination of humor and sorrow and inspiration.

In another close contender for my favorite story, Mikey comes "Home" from the war after a court-martial, just in time to watch his mother and her new boyfriend being evicted. The mother of his kids has taken up with a new boyfriend in his absence. His barely contained rage results in low-level violence, but his actions are inevitably greeted with the ubiquitous (and thus meaningless) phrase "Thank you for your service." None of that sounds amusing, but this serious story provokes unexpected laughter. It's better, I guess, to laugh than to cry.

I first read "Escape from Spiderhead" in The Best American Short Stories 2011. Saunders' futuristic take on chemically enhanced language and love was one of my favorite stories in that volume.

The remaining stories are all worth reading. More a vignette than a story, "Sticks" describes the way the narrator's father decorates a pole to commemorate Christmas, the Fourth of July, Veteran's Day, the Superbowl, Groundhog Day, an Earthquake in Chile, his wife's death, and, ultimately, his life. "Al Roosten" worries that noboby will bid on him at the anti-drug celebrity auction -- in fact, he worries about all sorts of things when his mind isn't buzzing with nonstop grandiose fantasies. A janitor in a medieval village is promoted to Pacing Guard after he witnesses his boss engaging in a sexual dalliance with another employee, a happy event that leads to "My Chivalric Fiasco" when he gets carried away with the role. The lives of two moms who are each doing their best, albeit in very different ways, intersect in "Puppy." Saunders takes a comical look at the power of positive thinking, in form of a memo from the boss, in "Exhortation."

Every story in Tenth of December is the product of a delightfully strange imagination, the work of an accomplished writer with a distinctive style. This is a collection of small gems that perfectly balance plot and character development. There isn't a dud in the bunch.
88 von 114 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Wow, how have I missed out on this author? 12. November 2012
Von brjoro - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Vine Kundenrezension eines kostenfreien Produkts (Was ist das?)
'Tenth of December' a short story collection by George Saunders, is, in a word, amazing! Very dark ironic humor, a unique and interesting style, and a collection of great short stories. I'm embarrassed that I have never heard of Mr. Saunders before, but I intend to rectify that mistake shortly, i'll be seeking out more of his work. I recommend very highly, with the one caveat that some of this material is pretty dark, so if you are not somehow who enjoys dark satire, than this may be a tough read. But for anyone else, what are you waiting for!!
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2.0 von 5 Sternen Some real reasons for all the negative reviews 14. April 2013
Von HMU123 - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
While many of the negative reviews here are of the "I'm just not feelin' it" variety, there are some quite specific reasons that this book is difficult to get through--and is actually quite infuriating. First, the fractured POVs. Saunders shifts back and forth among characters' perspectives and it becomes a pinball game. One shouldn't have to keep flipping back to previous pages and saying "HUH?" with increasing frustration in order to get through a short story. This is just poor writing, and I'm shocked that his editors didn't call him on it. Then there's the preciousness--the trying so hard to be different. Good writing actually DOESN'T call attention to itself. The reader shouldn't be having to swim through an author's style just to discern the content. Just tell me the story--and if it's a story worth telling, you won't have to impose layer upon layer of gimmick. As a writer and editor, I think a good question to ask is: What would this story be if you took away all the gimmicks?

Another problem is the stream of consciousness, the presumption that a middle-aged white man can get into the head of a poor young woman with an ADD child, for example, then rattle on (literally) as if he understands what she's thinking at any given moment. And then there's the adolescent presumption that the reader is fascinated by gross, lurid details, such as turds on a carpet. Why go there? As a writer, it's actually possible to tell a story without resorting to a series of "tricks" such as these to try to turn all eyes on you as a writer. The story is really about its characters, not about its AUTHOR! Get out of the way and let it be told. (Aren't these concepts he's familiar with as a creative writing teacher?)

We won't even mention the delirious hype, which must have been written when someone was very, very high. "The best book you'll read all year"? Really? If this is as good as it gets, please shoot me now.
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