A graceful, moving new collection by the author of The Report
- “This Close serves up quietly nervy stories of everyday life subject to swift psychological rifts.”—ELLE
How close can we come to love, success, happiness, forgiveness?
An older woman, irritated with her wealthy young neighbor’s yard “improvements,” offers a corner of her lawn to a Croatian immigrant who wants a vegetable garden. A recent college graduate living in New York City finds himself in a strangely entangled friendship with his dry cleaner and her son. A daughter accompanies her father to Israel, where, seeing a new side of him away from her mother, she makes an unusual bargain.
Through twelve stories, some stand-alone, others woven with linked characters, Jessica Francis Kane’s This Close questions the tensions between friendship and neighborliness, home and travel, family and ambition. In writing filled with wit and humor and incredible poignancy, she deftly reveals the everyday patterns that, over time, can swerve a life off course.
- “Kane shows such tenderness toward these spiky, exhausted, forlorn, uncertain people that she allows us to sympathize with their all-too-human flaws. We know these people. . . . They are us, at our most vulnerable.”—NPR.org
- “Quiet and clear, Kane’s stories eschew the flashy for the profound.”—The Washington Post
- “[Kane’s] characters are grappling with the tension between how they expected life to be as opposed to how it’s actually turning out.”—The Daily Beast
- “Kane beautifully illuminates . . . the space between what might have been and what regrettably often comes to pass. . . . This Close captures so richly the joy and ache of living.”—Star Tribune (Minneapolis)