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Fly Already: Stories

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  1,263 ratings  ·  200 reviews
A brilliant new collection of stories from Etgar Keret, a master of the genre.

There's no one like Etgar Keret. His stories take place at the crossroads of the fantastical, searing, and hilarious. His characters grapple with parenthood and family, war and games, marijuana and cake, memory and love. These stories never go to the expected place, but always surprise, entertain
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published September 3rd 2019 by Riverhead Books (first published May 11th 2011)
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Coral Ward Great question. I can't answer it as I don't read or speak Hebrew but I thought the same thing. And wondered if it was aimed at the US because "mom" w…moreGreat question. I can't answer it as I don't read or speak Hebrew but I thought the same thing. And wondered if it was aimed at the US because "mom" was chosen instead of "mum".

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 ·  1,263 ratings  ·  200 reviews

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Elyse  Walters
Sep 06, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“Fly Already” is Etgar Keret’s new collection of short stories. I’ve been enjoying the popular Israeli author for years.

Keret has been writing short stories for the past 33 years. He says writing short stories “is his way of coping with reality”.

Keret was also quoted as saying…..”writing is a little bit like being shot out of a cannon”…
One of the stories ‘is’ about a man who is shot out of a cannon.
The short story is: “The Next To Last Time I Was Shot Out of a Cannon”. Its a symbolic sto
Jul 29, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

My first fully completed Etgar Keret collection read in Hebrew, courtesy of the lovely librarian at my local library! (Previously read in English: The Seven Good Years, Suddenly, a Knock on the Door, & The Bus Driver Who Wanted to Be God.) Fly Already contains twenty-two character-driven short stories, circling different introspections on our thoughts through daily-life observations and reflection.

I took quite the journey for this latest Etgar Keret book to land in my hands, but here I am after
Susan Kennedy
I'm not sure I'm a fan of short stories. Maybe I just need to find one that works for me. This one just didn't. Some of the stories were interesting, others I just didn't care for. I didn't like the language in some and others just didn't really have an ending. I suppose it was meant to be that way, but it just left me unfulfilled. This is the second short story book that I just haven't really enjoyed.

lark benobi
The first story, "Fly Already," was exquisite perfection.

The second story, "One Gram Short," was amusing and delightful. It would make a good Coen Brothers movie.

The stories that followed these first two, though, were each like a little jab to my soul. I kept reading but I wish I hadn't, and now that I've come to the end, I feel wounded and unhappy, and the images and feelings left in my head from these stories feel like little bruises.
Keret's stories are incredibly human. They feel familar, each immediately engaging the reader from its opening line. And he has a keen eye for detail though he doesn't flaunt it, pulling in not just the exterior settings but the emotional as well... the emotions lift off the page and slide subtly beneath the skin.

I listened to this on my work commute, and damn, the audiobook was very well done, with a strong variety of narrators who brought each piece perfectly to life. My only complaint - if t
Jan 05, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3 1/2 stars. An exploration of loneliness in all its forms. Unfortunately I’m distracted by the bushfires and don’t want to write a review that reflects my state of mind so this is difficult. I particularly liked Todd and The Birthday of a Failed Revolutionary. How do/and will people cope with loneliness and exclusion?
Joe Kessler
Oct 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Even in translation, Israeli author Etgar Keret's short stories are challenging, haunting, and darkly comic. Few of them begin as explicit speculative fiction, yet they often take surreal turns in that direction as they go along, bringing in clones, or aliens, or magical transformations to an otherwise grounded scenario. Keret also excels at rich, provocative ironies, as in an imagined email exchange between a customer and a business owner, in which the explanation that they are required to clos ...more
Apr 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved it. Of course.
R.L. Maizes
Sep 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another fantastic collection by Keret. Filled with humor, magic, and heart. Every story delivers.
Scribe Publications
[Fly Already] touches the heart of the experience of global disruption. The existence of Israel becomes a crumb of being in a world without hierarchies that has no single center, and has no controlling point of view. Through the language and seeming lightheartedness of Etgar Keret emerges a very deep sadness. The different characters are connected to each other through alienation, loneliness, and a strong feeling of abandonment in the world. Keret has turned the genre of short stories into the r ...more
Oct 01, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first time I read an Etgar Keret book I was 16 and thought it was brilliant while at the same time somewhat overrated. His latest one leaves me with mixed feelings as well. While the are plenty of witty moments, I’m left with an overall feeling that this book would have been better served towards the 16 year old me.
Jun 30, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: death, short-fiction
Clever tale of a grieving man's attempt to stop a would-be suicide.

I must look for more by this author.

Read it here:
3.5 maybe. That extra half star is mostly for Pineapple Crush, which as several other reviewers mentioned is the highlight of the collection (and one of his longest works).

I’ve always adored Keret. Had a lot of respect for how much he could say in so little, especially given how most of us Jews trend towards being overly long-winded. Like that sentence right there. So I used to wish I could write like this but now... I don’t know. I still love some of his older work and one of the best and most
Maimona masarwi
Sep 27, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is my first time reading a book by Etgar Keret. I really enjoyed it a lot and definitely will read another one by him. This one is a great book, though I give it only four stars, because I find it hard to read more than a few chapters at the same time.
There is few things that stood out in the book:
The way the writer was able to give a critique on a lot of different fields and sometimes it is on the same story - on its few pages. He wrote stories that describe feelings more than anything el
Hafizz Nasri
Jul 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook
A thing about Keret's writing that I always love-- he gets me everywhere! He's so random and bizarre. His ideas always the unusual but you can totally relate-- love stories, family madness, one's worries and ramblings, daily conversations or weird things happened suddenly. Short straightforward phrases-- Keret is not the kind that would drag his narratives unnecessarily (okay maybe he did drag it peculiarly a bit). The strangeness and realism in his narratives complimenting well, giving me a hea ...more
Richard Wardrop
Jan 19, 2020 rated it really liked it
Very well written. Witty. Dark. Funny. The title story is a layered bit of sadness and deep realities about our most sacrosanct of relationships. “Car Concentrate” is disturbing in its reasoned relatability until it swerves into the median and into oncoming traffic of life (like many of the stories). “One gram short” and “Pineapple Crush” are probably my two favorites while “Chips” and “Allergies” are just stilly any fun. Never read this author before, but I would again.
Kathleen Gray
Aug 29, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An interesting collection. The advantage of short stories is that you aren't committed to a whole novel and if you aren't a fan of one story, you can easily turn to the next, which you might enjoy more. That's the case here, at least for me, as Keret, a writer clearly beloved by others, veered sideways a couple of times. That said, he's a writer to be reckoned with, and his vivid imagination will be appreciated by his fans old and new. Thanks to edelweiss for the ARC. Fans of the short story sho ...more
Dani Kass
Aug 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own, short-stories
It's just classic Keret. The stories are dark and witty and funny. There's a bunch of politics and some Black Mirror moments. There's some sexism that I try to tell myself is part of the story but also cringe while reading. There's so much about family and connection and community. I just absolutely loved it. Especially Fly Already and Pineapple Crush and Dad with Mashed Potatoes and Fungus and Allergies. Also, just, wow, Car Concentrate is dark as hell.
Jun 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This story blew me away. It was probably the most moving piece I have read this year.
Feb 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020
Short story collections are always difficult to review, but for real, I'm over here thinking, how on earth does one review this collection?? Keret is an Israeli author, and this was translated into English, and I feel like I need to give props to the translators because I think this was pretty magnificent, if not a bit messed up.

The problem for reviewing (but a wonderful thing for reading) is that these stories kind of take you where you don't expect them to go, and so I kind of don't want to go
Aug 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Etgar Keret is a good writer with soul, but you have to be in the right mood to read him, and not all of his stories take. I think what makes it harder is that I can tell the translators tried to translate from Hebrew as closely as possible, but there is still a ton of slang and Israeli cultural context that gets lost in the flavor of some of these stories.

My Hebrew is probably on a first-grade reading level, but just for kicks, I started reading one of the stories, "The Next-to-Last Time I was
Feb 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
I usually prefer novels to short stories. It’s extremely difficult to create interesting characters and an absorbing plot in just a few pages. I often find myself feeling dissatisfied – wanting to know more or wishing the stories had a real beginning and ending. Fortunately, some writers not only manage to meet my expectations, but exceed them. That happened with two recent collections I’ve read: “We Love Anderson Cooper” by R.L. Maizes (Celadon) and “Fly Already” by Etgar Keret (Riverhead). Bot ...more
Robert Teeter
Apr 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
Weird, surreal, postmodern (choose your adjective) short stories by Israeli writer Etgar Keret. As if Kafka were writing in the 21st century and displayed more humor.* I don't know how else to explain these stories. I don't want to list a bunch of examples, because 1) it wouldn't convey the whole and 2) you should read them without knowing what you're getting into.

I'll list some recurring themes: bad, inept, or absent fathers; parents (mostly mothers) who die when their children are young; anthr
Ridgewood Public
Jan 31, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: elias
As with all short story collections, not every one is a hit but, on the whole, this is Keret in his element. Each story places us in the mind of everyday people, some with strange and often troubling neurosis, and asks us to imagine their humanity. Sometimes surreal, sometimes all too real, you'll find yourself floating down the river of sharp satire and lackadaisical humor, dark as it may be at times.
Sep 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Unlike any book I’ve read before! These short stories—emphasis on “short,” as they were mostly 10-15 pages each—were whimsical, fascinating, and downright weird. After finishing each, half of me felt the need to pause and wonder what the heck just happened, while the other half was excited to go on to the next one. Perhaps my favorite part was that even in their farfetchedness, I found the characters to be oddly relatable. Ultimately, quite a fun read!
Feb 21, 2020 added it
Inventive stories. An interesting thing happens structurally with a tale of email correspondence interspersed between other stories.
Keret’s protagonists would be more likable if they weren’t so arrogant.
Mar 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Keret’s stories are like being a kid riding your trike down the hill at the park. Suddenly mid-hill your tire goes flat and you slow to a stop. You get up to find a nail has punctured the rubber. Just before tossing it to the side of the street, you realize that etched in the head of the nail is a small flower with slight gold accents to it. Only those who would notice the gold flower will appreciate Keret’s stories.
Jun 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I picked up this book expecting an easy short read, however Etgar Keret’s stories are too consuming to read more than one or two in a sitting. Loved how he referenced Ishiguro’s ‘Never Let Me Go’ in one of the stories and his depiction of the loneliness of being a grown up adult in modern Tel Aviv.
elise amaryllis
uhhh this was fantastic. the precision of my rating is due to averaging out my ratings for all the short stories but my heart says "i love this book and i want it in my favs list" so it gets a 5.

some quotes:

“I’ve never been shot out of a cannon,” I said and took another drag of my cigarette. “Sure you have,” Roman said, “when your ex left you, when your son told you he hates you, when your fat cat ran away. Listen, to be a human cannonball, you don’t need to be flexible or fast or strong, j
woman on a hot tin moon
Mar 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Magnificent! One of my favourite contemporary storytellers!
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GFOP Readers: Fly Already 1 17 Oct 29, 2019 07:59AM  

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Etgar Keret is an Israeli writer known for his short stories, graphic novels, and scriptwriting for film and television. His books had been published in more than thirty languages.

Keret has received the Prime Minister's award for literature, as well as the Ministry of Culture's Cinema Prize. The short film Malka Lev Adom (Skin Deep, 1996), which Keret wrote and directed with Ran Tal, won an Israel

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