The Barnum Museum: Stories

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Dalkey Archive Press, 1990 - Fiction - 237 pages
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The Barnum Museum is a combination waxworks, masked ball, and circus sideshow masquerading as a collection of short stories. Within its pages, note such sights as: a study of the motives and strategies used by the participants in the game of Clue, including the seduction of Miss Scarlet by Colonel Mustard; the Barnum Museum, a fantastic, monstrous landmark so compelling that an entire town finds its citizens gradually and inexorably disappearing into it; a bored dilettante who constructs an imaginary woman—and loses her to an imaginary man!—and a legendary magician so skilled at sleight-of-hand that he is pursued by police for the crime of erasing the line between the real and the conjured.

Ingeniously written and orchestrated, each exhibit in The Barnum Museum will compel you to continue, each story becoming a lure to the next.

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The Barnum Museum: stories

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Imagine a funhouse gallery of fictive techniques and ideas, and you'll have some sense of these stories. "A Game of Clue'' delineates the line between strategy and chance in a board game while ... Read full review

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About the author (1990)

Steven Millhauser is the author of numerous works of fiction, including the Pulitzer Prize-winning Martin Dressler, and In the Penny Arcade. His work has been translated into fifteen languages, and his story "Eisenheim the Illusionist" was the basis of the 2006 film The Illusionist. He teaches at Skidmore College and lives in Saratoga Springs, New York.

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