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Tenth of December

Tenth of December


Book - 2013
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A collection of stories which includes "Home," a wryly whimsical account of a soldier's return from war; "Victory lap," a tale about an inventive abduction attempt; and the title story, in which a suicidal cancer patient saves the life of a young misfit.
Publisher: New York : Random House, c2013.
Edition: 1st ed.
ISBN: 9780812993806
Characteristics: 251 p. ; 22 cm.
Alternative Title: 10th of December


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Nov 15, 2020

Very enjoyable, but often felt weird for the sake of being weird.

Feb 29, 2020

This was the first George Saunders book I read that wasn't a singular short story (I had read "Sticks" before), and I have reread parts of it many times since. "Victory Lap" is my favorite in this collection, but I really enjoryed all of the stories for their dreamlike feeling and, to me at least, unique writing style. All of the characters, especially the ones who readers hear the perspective of, seem very human and authentic, and I really love that. I definitely recommend this. It's great for rereading as well.

sotto_sis Feb 06, 2019

This was my first experience with Saunders' writing, and I quickly became a fan. The stories in this collection confront ethics with a quirky, often comical, clunky sense of grace. Sometimes an effort to do right turns out vastly wrong and sometimes the wrong move is actually the exact right one. Insightful, overflowing, and intricately human.

Nov 17, 2018

An interesting stylized bit of a writing from an author I'd never heard before. Read by the author and quite entertaining.

Feels like stream-of-conscious wordplay. Smart and funny at times.


Apr 11, 2018

I am a huge fan of this writer. The precision with which he skewers our delusional clinging to the American Dream(tm) under monopoly capitalism is balanced by his compassion toward humanity in the jaws of the Beast. These stories are classics already, and only improve with re-reading.

SCL_Justin Aug 05, 2017

What I liked about George Saunders’ short story collection Tenth of December is the aspiration in all the stories. All these characters are trying so hard to have a life that isn’t terrible, but they are stymied by the world and their delusions. In the right mood that makes the stories funny, in the righter mood that makes them terribly sad. All these people poised right on the teeth of capitalism, about to get ground up by the system in absurd ways. And sometimes they escape.

Apr 28, 2017

George Saunders is one of the most noteworthy writers of today. Saunders has an obvious passion for the art and craft of writing. Aspiring writers should pay attention to how Saunders develops voice, point of view, positions of power, prose rhythm, and character-- in addition to how tight his writing is (no bloviated narrative here!). Many of the short stories in this collection would be eternally useful texts to use in creative writing classes ("Victory Lap" is often used in such classes).

George Saunders may be of particular interest to fans of Tobias Wolff and Denis Johnson. As Saunders' writing is usually rich with controversial and disturbing subject matter, readers who prefer clean and wholesome writing probably won't have a fun time with this text. But for those who revel in hilarious takes on the absurd, complex, difficult, and alarming aspects of human life, this collection is a must-read.

DBRL_IdaF Mar 16, 2017

If Kurt Vonnegut and Shirley Jackson had a literary baby, his name would be George Saunders. In this collection of short stories, the element of satire and the narration of innermost thoughts is reminiscent of Vonnegut. While, as in Jackson's stories, a dark undercurrent is often implied without being overtly stated. This is especially evident in "Exhortation", a tale of office memoranda run amok.

"Semplica Girl Diaries" is a story I believe will stick with me for years. It's a satire that prods at American consumerism, reminding us there are consequences both for ourselves and for exploited workers from elsewhere. Parents will groan in recognition at the over-the-top competitiveness of the birthday party circuit.

If you don't understand exactly what is happening on the first page of the first story, stay with it. It will become clear and you will be rewarded for your perseverance.

If you like only straightforward, plot-driven, one-action-follows-another narrative, this book is probably not for you. If you like to try something a little different, give George Saunders a chance.

Apr 01, 2016

"Tenth of December" by George Saunders was an OK collection of short stories. Of the ten stories, I liked 'Victory Lap' the best followed by 'The Semplica Girl Diaries' and 'The Chivalric Fiasco.' These last two were science fiction-lite. While not all the stories had sci-fi elements, when they were there they created an odd surrealism to the stories. Humourous, maybe, but I didn't find myself laughing. To me they were just OK stories.

Mar 18, 2015

Interesting, satirical, well written stories. Funny and not so funny.

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