Pastoralia: Stories

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Riverhead Books, 2001 - Fiction - 188 pages
12 Reviews
If Americans in the future were to try to send us a message about where our culture is heading, they might simply point to the fiction of George Saunders. Living in a world that's both indelibly original and hauntingly familiar, the characters in these stories bring to life our most absurd tendencies, and allow us to see ourselves in a shocking, uproariously funny new light.
Here you find people who live and work in a simulated, theme-park cave and communicate with their loved ones via fax machine. You encounter a family happily gathered around their favorite form of entertainment, a computer-generated TV show called The Worst That Could Happen. And you hear an upbeat self-help guru sermonize about how figuring out who's been "crapping in your oatmeal" will help raise your self-esteem. With an uncanny sense of how our culture reflects our character, Saunders mixes a deadpan naturalism with a wicked sense of humor to reveal a picture of contemporary America that's both feverishly strange and, through his characters' perseverance, oddly hopeful.

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Review: Pastoralia

User Review  - Hafeez Lakhani - Goodreads

"Let me tell you something amazing: I was once exactly like you people. A certain someone, a certain guy, who shall remain nameless, was doing quite a bit of crapping in my oatmeal, and simply because ... Read full review

Review: Pastoralia

User Review  - Simone - Goodreads

George Saunders has this really dark but really funny view of US and our possible future, it's both frightening and awesome. There are a lot of moments I really think that the future he envisions is ... Read full review

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About the author (2001)

George Saunders is the author of Lincoln in the Bardo; Tenth of DecemberIn Persuasion Nation; The Brief and Frightening Reign of Phil; Pastoralia; CivilWarLand in Bad Decline; The Braindead Megaphone; and a children's book, The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip. His work appears regularly in the New Yorker, Harper's and GQ. In 2006, he was awarded a MacArthur Foundation "genius grant." In 2000, The New Yorker named him one of the "Best Writers Under 40."  He is a 2013 National Book Award Finalist for Fiction. He teaches at Syracuse University.

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