“The Lost Boys”: I review Jodi Angel’s “You Only Get Letters from Jail”

at the Weekly Standard:

The words “have” and “get” pulse insistently through Jodi Angel’s new short story collection. What you have to do, what you get to do, what you get away with; getting in trouble, getting used to it. Sometimes Angel even doubles up on these words: “My stomach clenched a little and I got ready to get in trouble.” That tensed, hurting readiness is one of the collection’s central moods. The other is a post-traumatic numbness which can sometimes become sentimentalized and is sometimes sociopathic.

All of Angel’s protagonists are teenage boys, living in a no-lifeguard-on-duty 1970s or ’80s hinterland of broken or unreliable families and bad-company friends. Before each story opens, something bad has already happened to these kids—often the death of one or both parents. The boys’ narrative voices always sound a little shocked, as if they’re still sorting through how to live in this new world into which they’ve been thrust.

more

Like Patheos Catholic on Facebook!

Patheos Catholic LogoCLICK HERE TO "LIKE" PATHEOS CATHOLIC ON FACEBOOK

Four Links from a Criminal Justice System: Aftermath Edition (With Funk/Soul)
"Arts & Faith Top 25 Films on Mercy": Image Journal
Nun on the Run: Check out Zach Clark's great new indie charmer, "Little Sister"
The Soul Searchers: Four Moral Histories of Washington, DC
About Eve Tushnet

CLOSE | X

HIDE | X