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The Animal Girl

3.6  ·  Rating details ·  43 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
The five heartbreaking and radiant stories in John Fulton's The Animal Girl explore the awkwardness of situations in which grief and erotic love collide. Here are people in extremis, struggling mightily, and often failing, to keep it together. In the Pushcart Prize–winning "Hunters," Fulton contrasts the humorous clumsiness of dating with the grim realities of death in the ...more
Paper, 160 pages
Published 2007 by LSU Press
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Angela
Nov 14, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone!
I enjoyed this book so much that I've already read it twice. Granted, I'm a bit inclined to enjoy a book where I can easily picture the characters and their location (I've lived in and around Ann Arbor, Michigan for 12 years now). However, Fulton does an excellent job of drawing the reader into the worlds of his characters.

It's easy to feel the grief, questions, concerns that they all feel. It's easy to want to be mad at them for decisions they're making and actions they take. At the same time,
...more
Jeremy
May 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
This guy was the only person to offer me actually useful advice about graduate school. So even though I didn't follow his advice, exactly ("Don't go into debt for an MFA," the teaching fellowship wasn't quite enough to live on...given my, uh, appetites), I feel a little indebted to him.

So: John, pretty much no-one earns more than four stars from me.

Now, my two cents:

So much grief in this book, I can't help making a comparison to Haslett's You Are Not A Stranger Here, and in particular, The Begin
...more
Geoff Wyss
Dec 22, 2009 rated it did not like it
If you care about fiction, run away from this book. I don't think I've ever read stories so afraid of themselves, so many safe ideas written up in safe, secondhand language. It's the kind of enervating book that made me think, halfway through, that my memory of fiction must be false, that maybe it was all this terrible. (In despair, I grabbed Denis Johnson's 'Jesus' Son' off the shelf and read the first page to instant relief. Any one page of Johnson is worth more than this whole book.)

I finishe
...more
Laura
Feb 18, 2009 rated it liked it
I'm really not sure what to say about this book. The writing itself had a rhythm to it that carried me along. But the stories quite thoroughly disturbed me. And it takes a LOT to genuinely disturb me in writing. I think I just need to wait for the book club discussion to get my thoughts in order for this one. ~shudder~
Sue
Oct 07, 2007 rated it really liked it
The novella this book is titled for is absolutely amazing. I met the author at the Dire Reader series in Cambridge, MA, and picked it up there. It wrecked me, I tell you! I was in tears, poolside, in Vegas!
Hannah
Nov 01, 2007 rated it it was amazing
I'm not much of a short story reader, but having said that, I really liked this collection of stories. I think the author, John Fulton, really captures and describes some rather uncomfortable truths about life and loss. The writing is just beautiful, in that sort of aching way. Good stuff...
Bobby
Sep 17, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: short story fans
3 short stories and 2 novellas. The 3 short stories are simple and well executed. The 2 novellas, 'Animal Girl' and 'The Sleeping Woman', however, make this collection worth the price of admission.
Molly
Nov 09, 2007 rated it liked it
Lovely sentences, but the women are (misogynist) cliches.
Chelsea Nelson
Jun 27, 2008 rated it really liked it
I heard John Foulton do a reading from a good portion of this book--very vivid images and quite intriguing stories.
Jennifer
May 28, 2013 rated it did not like it
I had to skip a whole section of this book as it detailed experiments on animals. The rest was just weird... I would not recommend this book to anyone.
Chris
Jul 18, 2009 rated it really liked it
Short stories that happen in and around Ann Arbor. The characters are strong, difficult, real and messy (personally, I found the last story, The Sleeping Woman, most compelling).
Holly
May 20, 2008 rated it it was amazing
One of the best collections of short stories I have read in a while.
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