David's Reviews > Black Tickets: Stories

Black Tickets by Jayne Anne Phillips
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's review
Jul 06, 2011

it was amazing

Ok. another rule-breaker.. read this one AGES ago, but I just added Christie Malry's Own Double entry, because it was one of the few books that made me laugh out loud (and to cry as well), and on that flip side, I add, Jayne Anne Phillips's short story collection, Black Tickets.
As the book-track of my life goes this is a huge milestone. As I recall, I stumbled upon this as a junior in high school, i think I had just gone to a reading by Harlan Ellison (who! a story for another time!), and there was announcement for JAP's reading of this work. I never made it, but it came on the radio, and well I was mesmerized. I can modestly say, that I was a precocious reader (to which i have not always been served well, I read some things much too young, and missed a lot, and I also missed out volumes of material for the younger reader that I never really gave a shot).. but still another day for that.

but this book hit me as a landslide. a landslide like Stevie Nicks's song and a real one. Emotional stories that hit the gut, and hit the gut hard. At the time I was just learning about acting and a character and Stanislavsky and Uta Hagen and never thought fiction could duplicate a real performance or the real itself. I even gave a copy of this to one of my most influential teachers (in memoriam Nancy Donohue), I read and re-read these short stories and really wanted others to get it. so much yearning, loss, need that you are forced to despair and and I hope find others to reach out to... eventually I found Carver, others (let's through Nick Cave in there and some TC Boyle just because i want to) but this was one of the first that really showed me adult feeling and reactions and concepts and i have no idea, but I know no one else who heard of it, and well that is wrong. I had read other deep books, but chiefly from other eras.. (Holocaust books, Zola, Byron, other so-called classics of the human condition) but this one hit me. hard. once again, i give my guarantee. if you buy it and don't like it, I will reimburse your and sign you up for a heart transplant.
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