I picked up Wild Child and other stories by T. Coraghessan Boyle from the Playaway display, not even noticing that it was a collection of short stories. I just saw the author's name and figured it would be worth listening to. It was.
The Playaway device is easy to use, although the on/off button for this one was a bit temperamental. Unlike my own MP3 player, it did not have a hair trigger, which is good. Somewhere between sluggish and hair is what you want in a trigger and an on/off button.
The stories are read by the author, who has an excellent voice for the task. In fact, it's so good, I was surprised to learn that it was he who was reading.
T.C. Boyle is exceptionally gifted as a writer, also. Even though I do not enjoy short stories as much as novels, I'm glad I read this collection. The sheer volume of quirky characters, including an abundance of the lovelorn, makes it worth picking up.
There's the guy who gets a snake for a pet, but comes to prefer the rats which were intended to be its sustenance. There's one in which a young boy feels no pain, by which I mean he literally is unable to sense physical pain. In one story there's a tiger on the loose in the suburbs.
T.C. Boyle is up to the task of creating believable characters even when they are in unbelievable situations. I recommend it in playaway form so you can listen while you do something else. Playaways are perfect for short story collections.
--Julie C., Headquarters