Come celebrate the launch of Best Worst American, a story collection by local author Juan Martinez!
These are the best Americans, the worst Americans. In these stories (these cities, these people) there are labyrinths, rivers, wildernesses. Voices sound slightly different than expected. There's humor, but it's going to hurt. In "On Paradise," a petshop manager flies with his cat to Las Vegas to meet his long-lost mother and grandmother, only to find that the women look exactly like they did forty years before. In "The Spooky Japanese Girl is There For You," the spooky Japanese girl (a ghost) is there for you, then she is not. These refreshing and invigorating stories of displacement, exile, and identity, of men who find themselves confused by the presence or absence of extraordinary women, jump up, demand to be read, and send the reader back to the earth changed: reminded from these short stories how big the world is.
Juan Martinez's stories have been published in McSweeney s, Glimmer Train, Conjunctions, Huizache, Ecotone, TriQuarterly, and broadcast on Selected Shorts. He lives in Chicago with his family and is an assistant professor of English at Northwestern University. His website is fulmerford.com.