Once You Break a Knuckle: Stories (Hardback)
  • Once You Break a Knuckle: Stories (Hardback)
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Once You Break a Knuckle: Stories (Hardback)

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£14.99
Hardback 256 Pages / Published: 12/04/2012
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In the remote Kootenay Valley in western Canada, good people sometimes do bad things. Two bullied adolescents sabotage a rope swing, resulting in another boy's death. A heartbroken young man chooses not to warn his best friend about an approaching car. Sons challenge fathers and break taboos. Crackling with tension and propelled by jagged, cutting dialogue, D.W. Wilson's stories reveal to us how our best intentions can be doomed to fail or injure, how our loves can fall short or mislead us, how even friendship - especially friendship - can be something dangerously temporary. An intoxicating cocktail of adrenaline and vulnerability, doggedness and dignity, Once You Break a Knuckle explores the courage it takes just to make it through another day.

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
ISBN: 9781408830284
Number of pages: 256
Weight: 384 g
Dimensions: 216 x 135 x 24 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
D.W. Wilson's stories have a wonderfully raw, vernacular energy which carries the reader through some dark and spitefully funny moments. This is a cracking read * Jon McGregor *
"The Dead Roads" was the stand-out winner of the 2011 BBC Short Story Award. My worry was that it might also be the stand-out story in this debut collection, but no - the standard is consistently, astonishingly high throughout. There are echoes of Wells Tower and Russell Banks, but Wilson's voice is distinctive, confident and completely enthralling * Geoff Dyer *
Excellent Canadian short stories ... Poignant * John Burnside, Scotsman Books of the Year *
Robust, musical, slyly funny, and shining a fearless light into the yearning male heart, these powerful stories should be required reading for any curious females of the species * Bill Glaston *
There are indeed echoes of Richard Ford and Raymond Carver here - most strikingly Carver, in content certainly - but Wilson's description and dialogue also attain the same lean, elemental punch, a total and exhilarating exclusion of the extraneous * Globe and Mail *
Macho Mounties, Boyish Boyz + Beers, Tough Times. + good writing * Margaret Atwood, Twitter *
Spiky, gritty short stories ... Wilson's world is dangerous and unpredictable, and his writing has a terrific, understated force -- Kate Saunders * The Times *
This is one of the finest pieces of debut fiction I've encountered in the last few years, and with it DW Wilson takes his place with other North American writers such as David Vann and Daniel Woodrell in eking out savage grace and empathy through muscular prose and the desperate circumstances of his characters ... all of the stories deal with the machismo ever present in such communities, but they do so in a beautifully rounded, three-dimensional way ... Wilson is fantastic at that old creative writing adage of 'show, don't tell', managing to speak volumes fort the state of mind of his characters simply by the way they handle a tool belt, slug a beer or slip their truck into gear ... throughout this collection, Wilson's prose is whittled down to the bone yet still carries an intense, visceral power. The economy and precision of his language will be the envy of many more experienced writers, and there is real literary skill on show here, Wilson imbuing his tales with a fist-clenching lyricism and a deeply felt pathos. At times, the emotional tension and downtrodden bleakness are almost overpowering, but Wilson always somehow manages to temper these with a little hope, a little humanity, a little dignity. This is a really exceptional debut, and an emphatic calling card from a genuine talent. I can't wait to read what he writes next * Sunday Herald *
A singular gift for combining taut, highly economical observations of men in their day to day lives with real tenderness and a restrained lyricism about the natural world - it is this ability that one finds in DW Wilson ... a massive achievement * Guardian *
Superb debut collection of stories from the winner of the BBC National Short Story Award * Sunday Times *
A collection of muscular short stories * Guardian *
Hugely accomplished debut ... A superb vision of entire lives played out against the stifling yet homely backdrop of an isolated community. Wilson leaves an unforgettable mark in his sublimely judged depiction of boys and men tussling with one another * Sunday Times *

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