Had a Good Time: Stories from American Postcards

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Grove Press, 2004 - Fiction - 267 pages
31 Reviews
In Robert Olen Butler's dazzling new book of stories, Had a Good Time, he explores America by finding artistic inspiration in an unlikely and fascinating place-the backs of postcards from a bygone era. For many years Butler has collected picture postcards from the early twentieth century-not so much for the pictures on the front but for the messages written on the backs, little bits of the captured souls of people long since passed away. Only Butler could use these brief messages of real people from another age to create fully imagined stories that speak to the universal human condition. From the hilarious "The Ironworkers' Hayride," where a young man named Milton dates a girl with a wooden leg, to the deeply moving "Carl and I," where a young wife writes a postcard in reply to a card from her husband who is dying of tuberculosis, to the eerily familiar "The One in White," where a newspaper reporter covers an incident of American military adventurism in a foreign land, these fifteen stories convey a complex and true vision of America and Americans that resonates profoundly into our own time.

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Review: Had a Good Time: Stories from American Postcards

User Review  - Rochelle - Goodreads

I don't usually read short stories. I much prefer big books with lots of character and plot development, I picked up this book in an airport just to cleanse my palate, I guess. I loved the premise of ... Read full review

Review: Had a Good Time: Stories from American Postcards

User Review  - Cathy - Goodreads

I don't read a ton of short-story collections (hence this is currently the only title on my shelf), but this collection was exceptional. The dozen or so stories are the byproduct of early 20th-century ... Read full review

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About the author (2004)

Robert Olen Butler teaches creative writing at Florida State University.

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