Everything Ravaged Everything Burned
A man is booted out of his home after his wife discovers that the sweat-smudged footprint on the inside of his windscreen doesn't match her own. Teenage cousins, drugged by summer, meet with a reckoning in the woods. A boy runs off to the carnival after his stepfather bites him in a brawl. In the stories of Wells Tower, families fall apart and messily, hilariously try to reassemble themselves. His characters - marauding Vikings, washed-up entrepreneurs, and jobbing hacks on local papers - are adrift from the mainstream, confused by contemporary masculinity, angry and aimless. Combining electric prose with compassion and dark wit, this is a major debut.
"This arresting debut collection of stories decisively establishes Mr. Tower as a writer of uncommon talent."--Michiko Kakutani, "The New York Times"Â "Artful and funny and empathetic.Â His fictional universe is a perfectly balanced little biosphere of violence and mercy, aggression and nurturing."--Sam Anderson, "New York" magazineÂ "A striking, often savage first collection of stories.Â Tower's language is as compact and muscular as a wrestler's body."--Heller McAlpin, "San Francisco Chronicle"""Â "Tower writes about raggedy men, neglected boys, and quarrelsome Vikings who are down on their luck (if they ever had any).Â But the stories are very funny, and surprising, and possess a rugged beauty."--Vendela Vida, "Vanity Fair"""Â "Tower seems incapable of writing a boring description.Â A crackling, head-turning debut."--Jonathan Miles, "Men's Journal"""Â "It sometimes feels as if there's nothing Tower can't render in arresting fashion.Â His