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A Hand Reached Down to Guide Me

Imprint: Serpent's Tail
Subject: Fiction

A Hand Reached Down to Guide Me

David Gates

The master of suburban tragicomedy returns triumphantly with a collection of wry, hilarious stories of individuals coming up against life's complications

eBook (ePUB/MOBI)?
9781782831808 (6 Aug 2015)

About the book

A woman moving calamitously into middle-age; a musician taking in a friend with terminal cancer; a failed actor moving to the country: cynical, unreliable, sinking into middle age or alcoholism, dealing with physical decline or mediocrity, Gates's characters are a dark reflection of our own urban and suburban lives. Terrifyingly self-aware, overcome by the burdens of the human condition, they find their impulses pulling them away from comfort into distraction or catastrophe. But wherever it is they're going - and sometimes it's nowhere fast - they won't go gently.

Relentlessly inventive, by turns comical, caustic and tragic (and often all three together) but always moving, the novella and ten short stories which make up
A Hand Reached Down to Guide Me reinforce David Gates as 'a true heir to both Raymond Carver and John Cheever.' (New York Magazine).

About the author

David Gates lives in Missoula, Montana and Granville, New York. He teaches at the University of Montana, and in the Bennington Writing Seminars, and was an editor at Newsweek, where he specialised in music and books. He is the author of two novels, Jernigan and Preston Falls, and the story collection The Wonders of the Invisible World. Jernigan was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Critics Circle Award. Gates's short stories have appeared in the New Yorker, Rolling Stone, Esquire, Paris Review and Granta.


Dark and funny, bleak and brilliant ... David Gates makes me sick with envy

- Nick Hornby

David Gates is a wonderful writer. The stories in A Hand Reached down to Guide Me are fully realised, entertaining, gripping, astute, painful, wise, outrageous and funny - all at the same time

- Geoff Dyer

[Gates's stories are] nimbly crafted ... rendered with meticulous emotional detail and an astringent sense of the absurdities and self-indulgences of contemporary life.

- The New York Times

Brutal, viciously intelligent and full of reckless, difficult love for its characters ... gripping, sophisticated, gasp-inducing

- Ben Marcus

A true heir to both Raymond Carver and John Cheever

- New York Magazine

Additional Information

Imprint: Serpent's Tail
Subject: Fiction

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