You Are Not Alone & Other Stories – by Sherril Jaffe

by Sherril Jaffe.  A homeless woman takes up residence in a man’s closet; a detective solves cases by feeling the emotions of the perpetrators; a woman happens upon a swingers’ club in the back of a tire shop; a couple struggling with their pets protracted endgame puts out a hit on them; and a man’s mother, newly dead and buried, calls him to ask if she can visit.  Each of these fifteen tales set in San Francisco uses its own dream logic to illuminate the great human themes of death, love, jealousy, anger, desire, and the nature of the soul.

These are stories where anything can happen, where we root for characters entangled by both everyday life and fantastical predicaments.  Humor and loss weave tightly together through these pages, and Sherril Jaffe’s formidable imagination and playful prose shine unexpected light on deep emotional truths.  -Caitlin Horroks, author of This is Not Your City

In You Are Not Alone & Other Stories we hear the heart beating after it has stopped, but not as in Poe.  It is righteous and profoundly moving how she convinces us that even when living ends, life continues as nuanced conversations with self and others.  Sherril Jaffe”s writing will survive us all.  -maxine Chernoff

These stories pummel you – deceptively, elegantly – with the desperation and glory of people just like you muddling through their lives.  Its characters stand teetering on brinks of their own making, the pin pulled from the grenade, the reader stand by, wide-eyed, anticipating the detonation, unable to stop turning pages.  -Joseph Bathanti, author of High Heart

You Are Not Alone & Other Stories is a winner of the Spokane Prize in fiction.  It can be purchased here.