Linked stories exploring the dark heart of the American family: "Electrifying, daring . . . sure to appeal to fans of Karen Russell and Lorrie Moore " ( Booklist, starred review).
A St. Louis Post-Dispatch Best Book of the Year
The Bowmans are declining Texas gentry, heirs to an airline fortune, surrounded by a patriarch's stuffed trophies and lost dreams. They will each be haunted by the past as they strive to escape its force.
The Fosters are diplomats' kids who might as well be orphans. Jill and Maizie grow up privileged amid poverty, powerless to change the lives of those around them and uncertain whether they have the ability to change their own.
The Guzmans have moved between Colombia and the United States, each generation seeking opportunity for the next, only to find that the American dream can be as crushing as it is elusive.
From the tense territory of a sagging, grand porch in Texas to a gated community in Thailand to a lonely apartment in nondescript suburbia, these wry, dark stories unwind the lives of three families as they navigate the ever-shifting landscapes of the American middle class.
"No one is safe, Parker reminds us, especially within the family circle--but one's chosen family can also offer salvation. . . . The stories, like the mounted heads in the Bowmans' trophy room, rivet the gaze, demand that readers recognize themselves in those glassy eyes--and then become disconcertingly alive." -- The New York Times Book Review