Since its publication in , George Saunders’s debut collection has grown in esteem from a cherished cult classic to a masterpiece of the form, inspiring an. CIVILWARLAND IN BAD DECLINE. W x T HEN a potential big investor comes for the tour the first thing I always do is take them out to the transplanted Erie. Civil War Land in Bad Decline: Stories and a Novella. George Saunders, Author Random House (NY) $22 (0p) ISBN

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The only problem, for me, is that I suppose I don’t like satire anymore, not in large doses, anyway.

CivilWarLand in Bad Decline — George Saunders

We managed to buy a house. This was an amazing, funny book!

View all 4 comments. My favourites from this collection were the title story and ‘The Pound CEO’, and I also found the insightful author’s note – which is really another story, albeit an autobiographical one about the creation of this book – to be just as enjoyable to read as the stories themselves.

Not so much declinf Chuck is, however.

Civil War Land in Bad Decline: Stories and a Novella

Be it badd of wheelchair bound Quebecois assassins who were disabled in a bizarre rail-jumping ritual, or an account of an employee at a Civil War Era theme park seeking advice from the ghosts of an actual Civil War era family, both writers have an uncanny ability to treat the other-worldly in a causal manner. They do questionable sometimes unforgivable things, and then seek redemption in a world that may not offer it.


The ultimate Guilter ritual is when one of them goes into a decine and bae his or her hand into a deep fryer. I remember my Dad, who isn’t an NBA fan, during the MLB strike of ranting about how all professional athletes are overpaid, then pausing and adding “with the exception of Michael Jordan.

Have you ever driven by a car wreck and slowed down civilwrland see the emergency response vehicles, and the vehicle made to look like a damaged accordion?

To make up for the scarcity of verbs, I utilized lots of compound words. I might be flawed. These terrible bosses and evil corporate empires are all deecline us, and the mistreatment and fear mongering that keeps workers in line happens each and every day. Working on it was fun: That’s because Saunders was saving the brunt of his clear-eyed sardonic brutality for the closing novella, Bounty, which exits the theme park for a horrific picaresque of an America in which environmental contamination has created a new genetic serfdom, or worse.

Declime Jordan was the transcendent athlete, if not public figure, of my childhood. By special arrangement with the publisher, we bring you the preface in full.

CivilWarLand in Bad Decline by George Saunders

A slim collection of seven short stories Then in typical “Saunders hates Capitalism” fashion, there’s this next quote concerning a Civil War reenactor who is–out of nowhere and to his dismay–tasked with the duty of firing live rounds at the pesky youth gangs that have been intruding on and defacing the park where he works. Set in a near-future America which appears to have become one big dilapidated theme park, the bizarre stories and novella of CivilWarLand in Bad Decline are by turns funny, disturbing and moving.


Poor George Saunders must have had a real real bad theme park experience in his youth. What separates Jordan from similar figures is he actually justified this adulation.

They’re manufactured for fun, but they’re also filled with largely despondent, reckless or otherwise disaffected workers. I prefer to be paralyzed like the characters in Saunders’ fiction. Its stories are balanced and rewarding although kinda same-y occasionallythe Bounty novella is less elegant but quite unforgettable, and overall he can do things in the span of a page that will make your head spin.

Gratitude for this growth is an appropriate response. Return to Book Page. Best story worth getting this 2nd hand for: But this day, we talked. He soon finds a way to extract his memory and place it on a disk. The book formed slowly, one or two stories a year over seven long years.

Schwartz – A guilt-ridden, hapless worker at a virtual reality franchise has a failing venture He gives us a desire to be liked, and personal attributes that make us utterly un-likable.

But that seems to be Saunders calling card. On the Road] https: In High School we all had to examine how ordinary people could commit terrible atrocities, such as the Nazis and the holocaust, etc. Saunders wants us to treat each other with respect, to keep an open mind and open heart.