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“Dangerous Laughter”

D.T. Max, in his New York Times review, has this to say about Steven Millhauser’s wonderful book, Dangerous Laughter: Thirteen Stories (Knopf, 2008): “Most fiction writers try to make characters seem like real people, but Millhauser flattens them, giving his books the paradoxical effect of seeming realer than reality… There is a disquieting quiet to every Millhauser sentence that makes it immediately recognizable, a feeling that each was recorded for posterity by the last man living.” Michael Dirda of The Washington Post agrees: “Illusion and reality, the power of the imagination, the nature of storytelling, childhood wonders, romantic yearning, a taste for the erotic and slightly perverse — these themes recur throughout Millhauser.”

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