The Times Are Never So Bad

Softcover sale price: $6.95 (Regularly $13.95)

Another classic Dubus collection of men and women attempting to live together, to tell the truth as they see it (or don’t see it), and to survive the crises, and sometimes the violence, of domestic life. The focus of this collection, which includes the often praised tale “A Father’s Story,” as well as the novella “The Pretty Girl,” is on the twisting deformations of love, on domestic disturbances, and on marriages whose sanctity can no longer bind them.

“The Pretty Girl” . . . may be the most compelling and suspenseful work of fiction [Dubus] has written.
Joyce Carol Oates, The New York Times Book Review

For the lyricism and directness of his language, the richness and precision of his observation, he is among the best short-story writers in America.
Judith Levine, The Village Voice

Mr. Dubus is a shrewd student of people who come to accept pain as a fair price for pleasure, and to view right and wrong as a matter of degree; without moralizing, he suggests that their self-inflicted punishments are often worse that what a just court, or a just God, would decree.
John Updike, The New Yorker

It is a world of secrets,” says the narrator of ‘A Father’s Story.’ Andre Dubus’s fine new collection is made of those secrets, observed with an art that is luminous with honesty and generosity. Dubus is interested in essential things—in the shadowy powers that circle our lives and the slender resources of faith and love with which we try to keep them at bay.
Tobias Wolff

Andre Dubus was born in Lake Charles, Louisiana to a Cajun-Irish Catholic family. He graduated from the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop, and later settled in Massachusetts, where he lived for the rest of his life. Winner of the prestigious PEN/Malamud and Rea awards, and a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, Dubus is widely regarded as a modern master of the American short story.

“Dubus conjured up some of the most perfectly calibrated, not to mention perspicacious sentences in the English language. His writing can make your heart swell and shrivel at one and the same time.” —The Times (London)