Dead Boys

Stories
By Richard Lange (Trade Paperback, 2008)
These hard-hitting, deeply felt stories trace men-- straight arrows and outlaws, have-it-alls and outcasts-- as they take stock of their lives and missteps and struggle to rise above their troubled pasts. A salesman considers his tenuous relationship with his sister after she has been brutally attacked. A house painter looks forward to moving his family out of their seedy neighborhood as he plans his last bank robbery. A drifter finds a chance at love when he delivers news of a barfly's death to the man's estranged daughter.

These are hard-boiled tales of life on the edge in a city where the sun hurts your eyes and dreams die more often than they come true. Full of heart and heartbreak, Dead Boys is the debut of an astonishingly talented new writer.

"The best debut collection we have read all year....you could shelve Lange between Denis Johnson, Richard Ford, and Richard Yates, and no fights would break out....Lange writes with tremendous heart, his characters' inner turmoil as rich and varied as any of the above masters. Dead Boys, we think, will live for a very long time." --E! Online, Tod Goldberg

"Superlative short fiction, and an arresting debut."
--Kirkus Reviews
  • Little, Brown and Company
    • Format: Trade Paperback

    • Price: $13.99 US/$15.50 CAN

    • ISBN-13: 9780316018807

    • On Sale Date: 10/01/2008

    • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company

    • Imprint: Back Bay Books

    Formats Available: Trade Paperback, Electronic Book

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These hard-hitting, deeply felt stories trace men-- straight arrows and outlaws, have-it-alls and outcasts-- as they take stock of their lives and missteps and struggle to rise above their troubled pasts. A salesman considers his tenuous relationship with his sister after she has been brutally attacked. A house painter looks forward to moving his family out of their seedy neighborhood as he plans his last bank robbery. A drifter finds a chance at love when he delivers news of a barfly's death to the man's estranged daughter.

These are hard-boiled tales of life on the edge in a city where the sun hurts your eyes and dreams die more often than they come true. Full of heart and heartbreak, Dead Boys is the debut of an astonishingly talented new writer.

"The best debut collection we have read all year....you could shelve Lange between Denis Johnson, Richard Ford, and Richard Yates, and no fights would break out....Lange writes with tremendous heart, his characters' inner turmoil as rich and varied as any of the above masters. Dead Boys, we think, will live for a very long time." --E! Online, Tod Goldberg

"Superlative short fiction, and an arresting debut."
--Kirkus Reviews

Richard Lange's stories have appeared in StoryQuarterly, The Sun, The Iowa Review and Best American Mystery Stories 2004. He lives in Los Angeles.
  • "Stylistically brilliant, painfully and truly observed and rendered, Dead Boys is not just one of the best collections thus far this decade:  Dead Boys is one of the best short story collections of the past 50 years, right up there with Barry Hannah's Airships, Chris Offutt's Kentucky Straight, James Baldwin's Going to Meet the Man and Flannery O'Connor's A Good Man Is Hard to Find." (San Francisco Chronicle).

  • "Dead Boys marks the emergence of a compelling new talent." (Los Angeles Times).

  • The comparisons with Raymond Carver and Denis Johnson are apt. Richard Lange's stories combine the truth-telling and immediacy of Carver with the casual hip of Johnson. There is a potent artistic sensibility at work here. (author of Talk Talk).

  • With the gritty stories in DEAD BOYS, Richard Lange breathes new life into the mythology of Los Angeles. The stories are achingly accurate and always telling of the hardscrabble lives caught on the grid work of the big city sprawl. This is the work of a writer who has come to know well the territory he is exploring.

  • Once per decade a first book of short stories arrives that blows everything out of the water.  DEAD BOYS is that book.  The characters are fiercely rooted in a Los Angeles that few people know about. They face desperate situations in which the best option is often a wrong turn that leads to another. Richard Lange has the courage and skill to depict those moments without judgment or apology.  Every story is solid--bold, lyric, honest--told with compassion and wisdom.  This book is great. (author of Kentucky Straight).

  • These twelve stories set in Los Angeles slice open the lives of contemporary men the way a saw opens a geode. Inside, we find secret hope and a yearning for tenderness in tectonic opposition to an innate pessimism and the struggle to maintain self-respect. Profoundly revealing, a rough-edged, dead-pan, haunting debut.

  • "Anyone left who's keen on noirish flicks like Heat or Chinatown, or finds kindred spirits in Thomas McGuane, Denis Johnson, or Charles Bukowski, will find comrades among these dead men." (Rocky Mountain News).



  • "The best debut collection we have read all year....you could shelve Lange between Denis Johnson, Richard Ford, and Richard Yates, and no fights would break out....Lange writes with tremendous heart, his characters' inner turmoil as rich and varied as any of the above masters.  Dead Boys, we think, will live for a very long time." -E! Online, Tod Goldberg

    (E! Online).

Formats

Product Details

Dead Boys
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
  • Price: $13.99 US/$15.50 CAN
  • Pages: 272
  • Physical Dimensions: 5-1/2" x 8-1/4"
  • Audio Run Time: 0
  • ISBN-13: 9780316018807
  • On Sale Date: 10/01/2008
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