“Di Filippo is like gourmet potato chips to me. I can never eat just one of his stories.” —Harlan Ellison
You can try to escape from the mundane, or with the help of Paul Di Filippo, you can take a short, meaningful break from it. In the vein of George Saunders or Michael Chabon, Di Filippo uses the tools of science fiction and the surreal to take a deep, richly felt look at humanity. His brand of funny, quirky, thoughtful, fast-moving, heart-warming, brain-bending stories exist across the entire spectrum of the fantastic from hard science fiction to satire to fantasy and on to horror, delivering a riotously entertaining string of modern fables and stories from tomorrow, now and anytime. After you read Paul Di Filippo, you’ll no longer see everyday life quite the same.
The 17 stories in this collection allow us to encounter Salvador Dali stumbling through his own personalized afterlife; experience the hilariously odd life of Hiram P. Dottle from birth through death and on into several reincarnations; gaze in wonder as a boy is born without a brain and his skull is invaded by wild animals; and, in the title story, a professor of children’s literature discovers a bizarre set of similarities between a lost text and his illicit relationship with one of his students.
Originally published: 2002