Trouble With Language (PRE-ORDER)

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UPC: 9781735572703
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Authors: Rebecca Fishow

Weaving together fabulist invention and gritty realism, Rebecca Fishow's debut collection, THE TROUBLE WITH LANGUAGE, unearths stories of men and women whose traumatic experiences make way for dazzlingly cerebral lives. A young man finds a severed head at his door years after his mother takes her own life. A married couple initiates a bloody jailbreak. A young woman poses nude for strangers in attempts to pay for mental health treatment, while another finds herself rapidly shrinking in a hotel room. No two of these surprising and playful fictions are alike, and each encourages us to peek behind life's curtains to discover more bizarre, enchanting, and joyful truths. Wondrously assured, THE TROUBLE WITH LANGUAGE heralds the arrival of a major talent.


“These stories burst with demented charm. Fans of Etgar Keret and Amelia Gray will relish this exciting debut.” —CATHERINE LACEY, author of Pew and The Answers

“A haunting, compelling, beautifully written trip through an America just below the surface of this one. Fishow is so alert to the world, through her language, that it makes the reader more alert to the world too. A wonderful debut that announces the arrival of a new, deeply poetic, voice to our literature.”
—GEORGE SAUNDERS, author of Lincoln in the Bardo

“I could read any one of these stories any number of times, and their joy, darkness and intelligence would remain fresh, mysterious and bracing. Fishow is an extraordinary talent.”
—RIVKA GALCHEN, author of Atmospheric Disturbances

“In one of Fishow’s otherwordly stories, everything turns to quicksand: a cat melts into the floor, an engagement ring melts off the narrator’s finger. ‘Forever is not so frightening on a grand scale,’ the story says, ‘but small forevers are another story. The forever between two grains of sand. The forever between zero and one.’ Fishow finds, excavates, and crystallizes all kinds of unexpected forevers in these stories, between lovers or halves of the self, or between the world we think we inhabit, and the one Fishow shows us, striking and askew and full of poetry.” —CAITLIN HORROCKS, author of The Vexations

“Rebecca Fishow’s The Trouble With Language is exuberant and urgent, like a trapped scream. The collection is a funhouse, each meticulously crafted story offering a shock, a thrill. By the end your throat aches, your ears ring, and you can’t wait to go right back in.”
—LINDSAY HUNTER, author of Eat Only When You’re Hungry

“Fishow is a vital talent who’ll turn your perceptions around on a dime. She’s proof that the best fablistic fictions are not, as detractors say, ‘squibs,’ but disturbances, meditations, and plots alive with dreams: profound. I hope in the future they’ll remember us and our lives through Fishow’s prose.”
—STACEY LEVINE, author of Frances Johnson and Dra—

About the Author

Rebecca Fishow is the author of the chapbook The Opposite of Entropy (Proper Tales Press, 2018). Her work has appeared widely in print and online, including publications in Tin House, Quarterly West, Joyland, and Smokelong Quarterly. She holds an MFA in fiction from Syracuse University, where she was a Cornelia Carhart Ward fellow. She lives in Maryland with her husband, and teaches creative writing.