God, the Moon, and Other Megafauna
Paperback | 9780268102265 | September 2017
Hardcover | 9780268102258 | September 2017
eBook (PDF) | 9780268102272 | September 2017
eBook (EPUB) | 9780268102289 | August 2017
Kellie Wells is a writer of startling imagination whose "phantasmal stories," Booklist says, "shimmer with a dreamlike vibrancy." God, the Moon, and Other Megafauna, Wells's second collection of short stories and winner of the Richard Sullivan Prize in Short Fiction, is populated with the world's castoffs, cranks, and inveterate oddballs, the deeply aggrieved, the ontologically challenged, the misunderstood mopes that haunt the shadowy wings of the world?s main stage. Here you will find a teacup-sized aerialist who tries to ingest the world's considerable suffering; a lonely god growing ever lonelier as the Afterlife swells with monkeys and other improbable occupants; a father fluent in the language of the Dead who has difficulty communicating with his living son; and Death himself, a moony adolescent with a tender heart and a lack of ambition. God-haunted and apocalyptic, comic and formally inventive, these stories give lyrical voice to the indomitability of the everyday underdog, and they will continue to resonate long after the last word has been read.
Kellie Wells is the author of a previous collection of short fiction, Compression Scars, which was the winner of the Flannery O'Connor Award, and two novels, Skin and Fat Girl, Terrestrial, a finalist for the Paterson Prize in Fiction. A congenital Midwesterner, Wells currently lives in Tuscaloosa, where she is associate professor of English at the University of Alabama.
"Ms. Wells is the only writer currently residing on earth who can be trusted to write serious fiction about God, death, and the suffering body—to say nothing of Little Miss Time—as adorable cartoon characters. Her language is at once fey and surgically precise. She is a philosopher who mines and undermines the commonplaces and popular ideas of her day like a news-addled mole wearing a diamond headlamp. She is one of a kind in her generation, maybe in any generation, and should be as famous as Isadora Duncan and Annie Oakley, whom she somewhat resembles." ~Jaimy Gordon, author of Lord of Misrule
Kellie Wells is a brilliant weaver of worlds both known and unknown, able to conjure the heights of the extraordinary and the wondrous as easily as she maps out our home territories, and her every story is alive to new possibilities of hidden glamour, startling beauty, necessary hope. ~Matt Bell, author of Scrapper
"A vibrant collection of 15 thematically linked stories shaped by surrealism, narratives seemingly reflected in a fun-house mirror. . . . Wells is a writer like no other. Prepare for magic allusive and illusive, intelligent and innovative." ~Kirkus Review
"Strange and imaginative alternate visions permeate Wells' fiction, and her latest collection of stories, 'God, the Moon, and Other Megafauna,' is filled with unusual characters who see and interpret their worlds in unique ways. . . . Wells seizes unlikely methods of presenting true stories, and she conveys common emotions without resorting to cliché." ~South Bend Tribune
"The fifteen contemporary fables of underdogs, oddballs, and misanthropes in Kellie Wells’s God, the Moon, and other Megafauna belong to a weirdly familiar yet decidedly tilted universe. . . . Wells seems never to have met a sentence she couldn’t enhance, a list she couldn’t extend, or a story she couldn’t send airborne. But along with the high-octane wordplay, she gently directs the audience’s gaze to the periphery and throws out a lifeline. Words abound, Wells suggests. And words can become stories." ~Foreword Reviews
"Wells drops us headlong into a welter of incontinent language and extravagant images that bore into us, piercing us with an uncanny yet comforting madness. As we read these stories we are keenly aware of their made-ness—they are cleverly crafted to an extreme degree. Yet we easily get carried up and into into these gorgeous worlds where the absurd and the incredible reveal to us the recognizable ways in which we all yearn to be truly seen." ~The Los Angeles Review
"In her latest collection of short fiction . . . Kellie Wells weaves intricate and improbable threads to connect the intimate with the distant, the quirky with the conventional, and the microscopic with the gargantuan. Whether these connections feel playfully loose in their scope or razor-sharp in their precision can vary from story to story and, at times, even paragraph to paragraph; they are, however, consistently executed with Wells' confident, alacritous prose and her brilliantly imaginative logic, making each of them a delight to read." ~Flint Hills Review
"In Kellie Wells’ brilliant, ebullient book you’ll meet animal linguists, sorrow swallowers (descended from the moon, of course), and, yes, the state of Kansas. God, the Moon, and Other Megafauna teems, it erupts, it jives, it makes you cry and sigh and laugh, then cry again. Read Wells when you want to be reminded of all the form is capable of, then read her again for the pure pleasure of her wondrous prose." ~Rachel Cantor, author of Good on Paper and A Highly Unlikely Scenario
"It’s all about scale, these transformative and transforming fictions by the professional protean Kellie Wells. These stories ratchet and zoom by powers of ten from the micro- to the telo-scopic and incorporate colors outside the range of sight, stimuli beyond the thresholds of our numb and numberless senses. The tales of God, the Moon, and Other Megafauna disturb, distort, derange, delight. Mad Italianate visionaries—Calvino, Fellini, Galileo—are let loose, unbounded and bountiful, on the flat vernacular graphing paper of the American Middlewest. This work is universal and individually intimate, horizontal and vertical, containing multitudes and more." ~Michael Martone, author of Michael Martone