Funeral Platter Stories By Greg Ames
From the author of the award-winning novel Buffalo Lockjaw comes a powerful collection of darkly humorous short stories. A young girl uses a burnt log for her ventriloquist act; Franz Kafka and an unnamed narrator cruise a dive bar for women; a grieving couple stage and execute their own funeral; a son brings hot chowder to his caged parents. This stunning collection—packed with moments of violence and tenderness—explores the humor and unease of modern life. Since he first began publishing his fiction, Greg Ames has been praised for his willingness to take risks and the strength and freshness of his voice. Assembled here for the first time, this collection brings together the best work from a brilliant American writer, a playful and innovative artist. In these twenty original short stories, Greg Ames earns his place as one of the best writers of his generation.
In the tradition of Etgar Keret, Greg Ames’ prose style ties together the absurd hilarity and deep anguish of contemporary life. These wildly inventive stories will appeal to readers who thirst for a unique, deeply humane voice.
TitleFuneral Platter
AuthorBy Greg Ames
PublisherSkyhorse Publishing
ImprintArcade Publishing
Published10 October 2017
Dimensions5.50 x 8.25in.

About the author

Greg Ames’ debut novel, Buffalo Lockjaw won the 2009 Book of the Year Award from the New Atlantic Independent Booksellers Association (NAIBA) and was met with critical acclaim. His work has appeared in the Best American Nonrequired Reading, McSweeney's, Southern Review, The Sun magazine, and Fiction International. He has been shortlisted for the Pushcart Prize. He splits his time between Brooklyn, New York and Hamilton, New York, where he is an assistant professor at Colgate University.

Praise for Funeral Platter

"Funeral Platter is a wonderful, witty collection of very funny and unusual short stories. Its singular characters, truly inventive premises, and manic, propulsive prose make for breakneck reading. Yet, without you knowing how it happened, these stories become genuinely insightful about our darkest secret: our loneliness." --Dana Spiotta, author of Innocents and Others and Stone Arabia

"Greg Ames' trick, his sleight of hand, is to somehow take the absurd and make it vanish into tenderness, to pull laughter out of the particulars of cruelty, and to give each gorgeously rendered sentence a living human tongue. Every story here is its own cabinet of wonders. Funeral Platter is hands down one of the best collections I've read in years."—David Ryan, author of Animals in Motion and Malcolm Lowry’s Under the Volcano

"Vivid, witty and surprising, Greg Ames's stories will move you in unexpected ways."--Claire Messud, author of The Emperor's Children and The Woman Upstairs

"If you think you’re ready for Ames’s life-changing brand of unhinged literary brilliance, first make sure that you’re someplace where it’s socially acceptable to lose your shit."— J. Robert Lennon, author of Familiar and Broken River

"The stories in Greg Ames' Funeral Platter are dispatches from another planet, a planet that resembles ours, populated by people who look like us, but who are weirder, more unhinged, more dangerous than we are, or at least weirder, more unhinged, more dangerous than we like to think we are. A glorious book—hilarious, unnerving, one of a kind."—Brock Clarke, author of The Happiest People in the World

"I can't say I've ever encountered a collection of stories as wildly varied as Funeral Platter. And so very funny too. This is a book where the ghosts of Kafka and Twain meet up with the likes of Carver and Barry Hannah who are all sitting around the campfire spinning tales of dark humor and candor. Each story told is a radical departure from what has come before it and what comes after. And yet, and then, there is the voice and vision behind each story that belongs entirely to Greg Ames. Bottom line here: This book is a thrill ride into what it means to be alive and stumbling in a world where to be bruised and confused is its own kind of fuel for amusement."—Peter Marcus, author of The Fish and Not the Fish

"The stories in this collection never ceased to blow my mind. Funeral Platter is a must read. One of the best collections out there." —Kim Chinquee, author of Oh Baby and Veer

"A hilarious albeit at times unsettling rendition of contemporary middle-class life in America. This is the real deal. The stories are honest, visceral, utterly original, charming, relentless, poetic, memorable. An expertly woven, subtly interlinked collection, written with great narrative command, Funeral Platter will strike a chord with readers as it struck a chord with me."—Chinelo Okparanta, author of Happiness, Like Water and Under the Udala Tree

Praise for Greg Ames

“I’m excited about this novel for a few reasons. One, Ames opens with a great quote from Flannery O’Connor’s under-appreciated novel Wise Blood: 'Where you come from is gone, where you thought you were going to was never there, and where you are is no good unless you can get away from it.' Two, it’s set in Buffalo, New York, which is full of frustrated artists, frustrated young people, and thousands of psychiatric patients who were given one-way bus tickets when they were released from New York City mental hospitals in the early eighties (Buffalo was the last stop). Three, the premise of a son trying to decide whether to help his Alzheimer’s-stricken mother commit suicide is provocative and memorable.” —The New Yorker

"The voice of this novel invites you right in, and Ames knows how to build up the world with a light hand while still getting to the complicated and painful ways we muddle through. Funny and fresh and generous." —Aimee Bender, author of The Girl in the Flammable Skirt

"Buffalo Lockjaw, like its charming, bitter screw-up of a narrator, reaches finally for larger meaning, and succeeds. Greg Ames has written a brazen and tender book about a city and a scene, a mother and a son, and the beauty and pain of several kinds of love." —Sam Lipsyte, author of Home Land

"In Buffalo Lockjaw, Greg Ames manages to evoke place and expose the complexities of character in a single swift phrase. It is a funny-sad, heartbreaking, hypnotically readable debut." —Adrienne Miller, author of The Coast of Akron

"Greg Ames has written a beautiful novel. It is infused with dark comedy and pathos and great, hardboiled prose. In Buffalo Lockjaw, love of one's parents and love of one's hometown mix powerfully with the mad undertow of loss that seems as inevitable in life as gravity. I'm honored to share a last name -- no relation -- with such a wonderful writer." —Jonathan Ames, author of Wake Up, Sir!

"Greg Ames, one of the funniest writers I’ve ever read, faces dead-on the most terrifying event in a person's life. Buffalo Lockjaw is frightening, heart-rending, and beautiful. I pay it my highest compliment: I didn’t want it to end." —Poe Ballantine, author of Things I Like About America

"Buffalo, N.Y., is as much a character as any of the slackers populating Ames's darkly humorous debut about a young man with a copy of Assisted Suicide for Dummies in his car and a 56-year-old mother with Alzheimer's who he believes wants to die. Ames's depiction of James's bedside concern for his mother straddles the line between caustically comic and wrenchingly emotional, while the wry riffs on family tension and the sad state of Buffalo that appear throughout this fine first novel don't undercut the serious consideration of murder or mercy for terminal patients.” —Publishers Weekly

ISBNs: 9781510725812 978-1-5107-2581-2 Title: funeral platter category:FIC 
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