Last Car Over the Sagamore Bridge

By Peter Orner (Hardcover Book, 2013)
"A ravishing collection, full of wisdom, grief, beauty, and especially surprise."--Anthony Doerr, author of The Shell Collectors

Peter Orner zeroes in on the strange ways our memories define us: A woman's husband dies before their divorce is finalized; a man runs for governor of Illinois and loses much more than an election; two brothers play beneath the infamous bridge at Chappaquiddick. Employing the masterful compression for which he has been widely praised, Orner presents a kaleidoscope of individual lives viewed in startling, intimate close-up.

Whether writing of Geraldo Rivera's attempt to reveal the contents of Al Capone's vault or of a father and daughter trying to outrun a hurricane, Orner illuminates universal themes. In stories that span considerable geographic ground--from Chicago to Wyoming, from Massachusetts to the Czech Republic--he writes of the past we can't seem to shake, the losses we can't make up for, and the power of our stories to help us reclaim what we thought was gone forever.
  • Little, Brown and Company
    • Format: Hardcover Book

    • Price: $25.00 US/$28.00 CAN

    • ISBN-13: 9780316224642

    • On Sale Date: 08/06/2013

    • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company

    Formats Available: Hardcover Book, Trade Paperback, Electronic Book

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"A ravishing collection, full of wisdom, grief, beauty, and especially surprise."--Anthony Doerr, author of The Shell Collectors

Peter Orner zeroes in on the strange ways our memories define us: A woman's husband dies before their divorce is finalized; a man runs for governor of Illinois and loses much more than an election; two brothers play beneath the infamous bridge at Chappaquiddick. Employing the masterful compression for which he has been widely praised, Orner presents a kaleidoscope of individual lives viewed in startling, intimate close-up.

Whether writing of Geraldo Rivera's attempt to reveal the contents of Al Capone's vault or of a father and daughter trying to outrun a hurricane, Orner illuminates universal themes. In stories that span considerable geographic ground--from Chicago to Wyoming, from Massachusetts to the Czech Republic--he writes of the past we can't seem to shake, the losses we can't make up for, and the power of our stories to help us reclaim what we thought was gone forever.

Peter Orner is the author of Esther Stories, The Second Coming of Mavala Shikongo, and Love and Shame and Love. His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in the New York Times, The Atlantic, The Paris Review, Granta, McSweeney's, Best American Stories, and other periodicals. Orner has received the Rome Prize from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, The Goldberg Prize for Jewish Fiction, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and two Pushcart Prizes. He teaches at San Francisco State University and lives in Bolinas, California.

  • LAST CAR OVER THE SAGAMORE BRIDGE by Peter Orner


  • LAST CAR OVER THE SAGAMORE BRIDGE by Peter Orner

  • Praise for Love and Shame and Love:

    "A book that gets in your head and makes itself at home there. . . .Like the James Salter of Light Years and A Sport and a Pastime, with their acutely observed domestic and sexual tension." (New York Times Book Review).

  • Praise for Last Car over the Sagamore Bridge

    "A séance of a book--moody, tragic, sacred by turns."--Stuart Dybek, author of The Coast of Chicago

  • "A new story collection reaffirms Chicago-born Peter Orner's storytelling mastery."--Chicago Tribune

  • "Beautiful. . . .Think Saul Bellow (Chicago setting, rollicking Jewish-style comedy) mated with Chekhov (unassuming, devastating detail), set to the twangy thump of early Tom Petty.  Now that promises quite a love child." (Boston Globe).

  • "One of our best and most adventurous writers....By casting a wide net and depicting so many and various souls, he urges us toward recognition of the transcendent--the beauty of it all, the one big soul."--Daniel Woodrell, author of The Maid's Version

  • "Peter Orner is a true writers' writer, which is to say a writer writers complain to writers about readers not reading. His novel The Second Coming of Mavala Shikongo ranks high among the best works of fiction about Africa ever written by an American, and his collection Esther Stories contains work to rival that of David Means and Tobias Wolff. Orner's latest collection, Last Car Over the Sagamore Bridge, is bundled into four sections and includes more than fifty pieces of fiction...Imagine Brief Interviews with Hideous Men written by Alice Munro."--Tom Bissell, Harper's

  • Praise for ESTHER STORIES (2001)

    "A luminous debut collection. . . .Like Amy  Bloom and Charles Baxter, Orner has a gift for revealing how the tragic and the mundane occupy equal berths in our limited mental space." (John Freeman, Chicago Tribune).

  • "Reaffirms Peter Orner's storytelling mastery."--Chicago Tribune Printers Row

  • "In his second story collection, Orner fires jewel-toned shards of fiction into a stunning whole."--Publishers Weekly, starred review

  • "Some of Orner's very short stories are the best of that form that I have read since Isaac Babel's." (Andre Dubus).

  • "A magnificent and moving mosaic."--San Francisco Chronicle

  • "If the short story were in need of a future, it has been found in Peter Orner." (Dennis Lehane).

  • "Orner packs remarkable pathos into his condensed narratives."--Wall Street Journal

  • "Peter Orner is mining a deep vein of human experience....What he comes up with is a true work of art that will make you think, 'Oh, this is how it's done.'"--Maile Meloy, author of Both Ways Is the Only Way I Want It

  • "These are stories of unusual delicacy and beauty, and this is a remarkable collection." (Charles Baxter).

  • "The spirit of Esther Stories is, like true beauty, no aesthete, and like true love, no setimentalist." (Marilynne Robinson).

  • "Orner fires jewel-toned shards of fiction into a stunning whole."--Publishers Weekly

  • "Orner doesn't simply bring his characters to life, he gives them souls."  (Margot Livesey, New York Times Book Review).

  • "Imagine Brief Interveiws with Hideous Men written by Alice Munro."--Tom Bissell, Harper's Magazine

  • "Orner is an undisputed master of the short short story."--Booklist

Formats

Product Details

Last Car Over the Sagamore Bridge
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
  • Price: $25.00 US/$28.00 CAN
  • Pages: 208
  • Physical Dimensions: 5-1/2" x 8-1/4"
  • ISBN-13: 9780316224642
  • On Sale Date: 08/06/2013
Last Car Over the Sagamore Bridge