July 10, 2024

Jess Row has drawn acclaim for charting the intricacies and absurdities of race in America in his novels Your Face in Mine and The New Earth and in his essay collection White Flights: Race, Fiction, and the American Imagination. Now, in his first collection of short stories in more than a decade, he evokes white America—specifically liberal, educated white Northeasterners—awkwardly (and at times hilariously) poised on the precipice of cultural and global collapse. From summer backyard parties in Princeton to post-apocalyptic Vermont, from a camp for disadvantaged youth in Boston Harbor to a deranged visit to John Cheever’s Connecticut, STORYKNIFE is a funny, troubling, indelible look at a culture whose rituals and expectations are dissolving into thin air.