Karyn Gayle's Reviews > Ladies and Gentlemen

Ladies and Gentlemen by Adam Ross
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's review
Feb 14, 2012

did not like it
Read from February 11 to 13, 2012

I was disappointed with this book, especially since I loved this author's first book, "Mr. Peanut." Like “Mr. Peanut,” this book was well written. Also similar to his previous work, you definitely see Ross’ bleak view of human nature. Each story was interesting to read but none (with the exception of the first story which just had a predictable ending) had an ending. Six of the seven stories just abruptly ended when I thought I was in the tale’s middle. My first thought was, “Did I miss something? How could that story just end there?” Then, the next story also ended with no resolution or interesting twist. The next story, again, although an interesting narrative, had no central plot or conclusion. When the book ended, I felt like I had read 6 stories, each missing their last chapter. Perhaps Adam Ross thought, since he gave us multiple endings in “Mr. Peanut,” he’d give none in “Ladies & Gentlemen?”

I may go back and read "Mr. Peanut" a third time but I don't think I'll pick this one up again any time soon.
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Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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message 1: by Worth (new)

Worth I loved Mr. Peanut too. Thanks for the warning here.

Denise Rose I thinks it's always dangerous to compare a writer's Niels with their short stories. It's like comparing an egg with a chicken. Why does short stories have to have twist endings? That's a cliché. A lot of great short stories simply zoom in on a life and then leaves again. Therein lies the unpredictability you were after. When does it end? Oh. There.

Denise Rose Think*

Cory Gaskins Hey there. Have you read other contemporary short story collections, esp. the ones that get published in The New Yorker? Man! I really hate those stories in the New Yorker (beside Jhumpa Lahiri :) ) because they tend to be well-written, yet their plot could be summarized as "depressing protagonist gets depressed, the end". I was pretty surprised to read your review since I thought this collection had a "proper" storyline and ending compared to most other short story collections out there, which made this book really refreshing (to me, at least).

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