Today I’m another stop on TLC Blog Tour for Diane Cook’s Debut novel Man vs Nature.
A refreshingly imaginative, daring debut collection of stories which illuminates with audacious wit the complexity of human behavior, as seen through the lens of the natural world
Told with perfect rhythm and unyielding brutality, these stories expose unsuspecting men and women to the realities of nature, the primal instincts of man, and the dark humor and heartbreak of our struggle to not only thrive, but survive. In “Girl on Girl,” a high school freshman goes to disturbing lengths to help an old friend. An insatiable temptress pursues the one man she can’t have in “Meteorologist Dave Santana.” And in the title story, a long fraught friendship comes undone when three buddies get impossibly lost on a lake it is impossible to get lost on. In Diane Cook’s perilous worlds, the quotidian surface conceals an unexpected surreality that illuminates different facets of our curious, troubling, and bewildering behavior.
Other stories explore situations pulled directly from the wild, imposing on human lives the danger, tension, and precariousness of the natural world: a pack of not-needed boys take refuge in a murky forest and compete against each other for their next meal; an alpha male is pursued through city streets by murderous rivals and desirous women; helpless newborns are snatched by a man who stalks them from their suburban yards. Through these characters Cook asks: What is at the root of our most heartless, selfish impulses? Why are people drawn together in such messy, complicated, needful ways? When the unexpected intrudes upon the routine, what do we discover about ourselves?
As entertaining as it is dangerous, this accomplished collection explores the boundary between the wild and the civilized, where nature acts as a catalyst for human drama and lays bare our vulnerabilities, fears, and desires.
Short Stories are a different type of genre than I’m use to. The last time I even considered reading any collection of short stories was in my college English Class. When I started reading this collection, I was stumped. I wanted to like this book and enjoy it. I just couldn’t it. There were times that I had to go and reread the section in order to make sense of everything. The subject matter was very diverse and deeper than what I could comprehend. The collection of stories fit together rather nicely. Overall, this book is great for someone that likes deeper subject matter. You should check it out, especially if you only have time for a story or two.
Title- Man vs nature
Author – diane cook
Format- unedited advance copy
pages- 272 pages
Release date- October 7th 2014