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224A brilliant new collection of stories from Etgar Keret, a master of the genre. There's no one like Etgar Keret. His stories take place at the crossroads of the fantastical, searing, and hilarious. His characters grapple with parenthood and family, war and games, marijuana and cake, memory and love. These stories never go to the expected place, but always surprise, entertain, and move ... In 'Arctic Lizard', a young boy narrates a post-apocalyptic version of the world where a youth army wages an unending war, rewarded by collecting prizes. A father tries to shield his son from the inevitable in 'Fly Already'. In 'One Gram Short', a guy just wants to get a joint to impress a girl and ends up down a rabbit hole of chaos and heartache. And in the masterpiece 'Pineapple Crush', two unlikely people connect through an evening smoke down by the beach, only to have one of them imagine a much deeper relationship. The thread that weaves these pieces together is our inability to communicate, to see so little of the world around us and to understand each other even less. Yet somehow, in these pages, through Etgar's deep love for humanity and our hapless existence, a bright light shines through and our universal connection to each other sparks alive. ' Fly Already touches the heart of the experience of global disruption. The existence of Israel becomes a crumb of being in a world without hierarchies that has no single centre, and has no controlling point of view. Through the language and seeming lightheartedness of Etgar Keret emerges a very deep sadness. The different characters are connected to each other through alienation, loneliness, and a strong feeling of abandonment in the world. Keret has turned the genre of short stories into the refined and necessary literary expression of this time.' -Sapir Prize Judges' Notes Praise for Etgar Keret- "If I could get you to read one writer, it would be Etgar Keret. His impossible blend of humor and tragedy, cynicism and empathy as well as big-hearted narratives that occupy the tiniest of page counts make him one of my favourites. Maybe one of yours." -Carolyn Kellogg, The Los Angeles Times "A brilliant writer...completely unlike any writer I know. The voice of the next generation." -Salman Rushdie "Read him, and the world will never look the same again." -Claire Messud "One of my favourite Israeli writers." -John Green "Etgar Keret's stories are funny, with tons of feeling, driving towards destinations you never see coming. They're written in the most unpretentious, chatty voice possible, but they're also weirdly poetic. They stick in your gut. You think about them for days." -Ira Glass, host and producer of This American Life "Etgar Keret possesses an imagination not easily slotted into conventional literary categories. His very short stories might be described as Kafkaesque parables, magic-realist knock-knock jokes or sad kernels of cracked cosmic wisdom." -A.O. Scott, New York Times " Keret's writing testifies to the power of the surreal, the concise and the fantastic ... O blique, breezy, seriocomic fantasies that defy encapsulation, categorisation and even summary." -Washington Post "It's astonishing what he can do in just two pages- go from funny to bizarre to touching to satiric to meta to surprising and surreal... A master storyteller, creating deep, tragic, funny, painful tales with scarcely more words than you've read in this review." -Carolyn Kellogg, Los Angeles Times