The Wrong Heaven

The Wrong Heaven

Stories

Book - 2018 | First edition.
Average Rating:
Rate this:
3
3
In The Wrong Heaven, anything is possible: bodies can transform, inanimate objects come to life, angels appear and disappear. In the title story, a schoolteacher's life takes an unexpected turn when the plastic Jesus and Mary lawn ornaments she buys start talking to her. In "Horse," the story's narrator decides to join her best friend, who is undergoing regular IVF injections, with injections of her own; ones that will transform her into a horse. And in "Alternate," a woman is convinces that all she needs to revive a stagnant relationship is the perfect poster of the Dalai Lama. While some of the worlds Bonnaffons creates are more recognizable than others, all of them are decidedly strange. Hugely funny, bold, and probing, these stories lay bare the heart of our deepest longings and mysteries.
Publisher: New York :, Little, Brown and Company,, 2018.
Edition: First edition.
Branch Call Number: FICTION
Characteristics: 245 pages ;,22 cm.

Opinion


Featured Blogs and Events

What to do when I’m gone

Once you make mention of your possible retirement, people start hounding you mercilessly. All boundaries crash and burn and you will find yourself having to answer questions like: "Why now?", "Surely you'll get bored?", "Exactly when?", "Will you have enough money?", "What about your sex life?" ... OK so I made up that last one, but all the others stay put. What I really needed was a book… (more)


From Library Staff

Roberta's pick: In this first collection of short stories Amy Bonnaffons shows an amazing ability to be both direct and oblique and hit her target every time. Great title and Madonna covers are IN and this is one of the best.

Comment
robertafsmith Oct 05, 2018

Roberta's pick: In this first collection of short stories Amy Bonnaffons shows an amazing ability to be both direct and oblique, and hit her target every time. Great title plus Madonna covers are IN and this is one of the best.


From the critics


Community Activity

Comment

Add a Comment
a
andreareads
May 06, 2019

I could've done with more plot and less surreal allegory, but the parts I liked I really liked. Reminded me of the TV show Wonderfalls.

k
KlayDyer
Nov 20, 2018

EA Poe was an early and influential writer about the importance of endings (of stories, and perhaps of lives) in any creative narrative. Raymond Carver honed his final sentences into an insurmountable art form. Amy Bonnaffons channels both men in Wrong Heaven, her spectacular debut collection of ten stories rich with endings of undeniable virtuosity.
Equal parts playful, profound, and wonderfully profane, these stories focus on women at various stages in their lives, but who collectively are “starting to believe, like other adults” that they “should start pretending to know more than [they] do.” But as we all eventually discover, such belief is fraught with perils of many angles and articulations.
In “The Other One,” as example, lawyer Chris takes her lunch hours to sing (obsessively) her karoake version of Alanis Morissette’s “Hand in My Pocket.” Searching for meaning (in the song and in her life), she asks (and sometimes answers) a series of philosophical questions that linger across this collection: “What moral life wasn’t Sisyphean, tilted toward failure as much as success? The best one could do, it seemed, was to accept the paradox and try to really f****** enjoy oneself in the breaks between pushing the rock uphill.”
Like so many uphill climbs captured in the collection, Chris’s questions inevitably probe the edges of a psycho-emotional place that exists beyond language. When asked to articulate the sense of loss that weighs on her life, she is almost paralyzed, left without words: “I had no idea how to begin.”
Not surprisingly, moments of silence are densely packed with meaning in these stories. Two strangers silently make s’mores over a burning plastic statue of Jesus, watching “the marshmallow’s skin slowly turning into gold, kissed again and again by the edge of the flame.” An angel hovers carefully (as in full of care) and trapped in his own thoughts above the body of a dead woman in the heartbreakingly brilliant “Black Stones.”
The Wrong Heaven is not flawless. Bonnaffons over-intellectualizes “Horse,” one of the longer stories, to be sure. But quibbles, minor quibbles. Mark these words: The Wrong Heaven delivers a brilliant new voice into the literary world. Pay attention.

robertafsmith Oct 05, 2018

Roberta's pick: In this first collection of short stories Amy Bonnaffons shows an amazing ability to be both direct and oblique, and hit her target every time. Great title plus Madonna covers are IN and this is one of the best.

Quotes

Add a Quote
a
andreareads
May 06, 2019

My heart jumped up and kicked me in the ribs.

a
andreareads
May 06, 2019

Doris held this pity for her friend in her mind, like water cradled in two hands. In its presence she’d enjoy Katie’s company much more; in a generous mood one might mistake this pity for kindness, or even love.

a
andreareads
May 06, 2019

He was at least thirty, but looked like he’d only recently learned how to dress himself.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.

Summary

Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.

Notices

Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Recommendations

Subject Headings

  Loading...

Find it at My Library

  Loading...
[]
[]
To Top