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Let’s Play Doctor (Electric Literature's Recommended Reading Book 284)

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In “Let’s Play Doctor,” a story culled from Mazza’s new book, Charlatan: New and Selected Stories, edited by fellow fiction writer Gina Frangello (Frangello’s introduction and Rick Moody’s foreword are terrific), we meet Dee, a young woman married three years and wrestling with her desire for Dr. Shea, the surgeon who performs a hernia operation on her at the beginning of In “Let’s Play Doctor,” a story culled from Mazza’s new book, Charlatan: New and Selected Stories, edited by fellow fiction writer Gina Frangello (Frangello’s introduction and Rick Moody’s foreword are terrific), we meet Dee, a young woman married three years and wrestling with her desire for Dr. Shea, the surgeon who performs a hernia operation on her at the beginning of the story and later visits her in an anesthesia-induced hallucination. What Mazza pulls off in this simultaneously erotic and disturbing dream sequence is something I don’t think I’ve ever seen before on the page: she commingles Dee’s physical desire for Dr. Shea with her fear of violation through both the controlled violence of surgery and adulterous sex. - Christine Sneed --- About the Author: Cris Mazza’s latest book is Charlatan: New and Selected Stories. Mazza has seventeen other titles of fiction and literary nonfiction including her last book, Something Wrong With Her, a hybrid real-time memoir; her first novel How to Leave a Country, which won the PEN/Nelson Algren Award for book-length fiction; and the critically acclaimed Is It Sexual Harassment Yet? She is a native of Southern California and is now a professor in the Program for Writers at the University of Illinois at Chicago. About the Guest Editor: Christine Sneed is the author of The Virginity of Famous Men, Paris He Said, Little Known Facts, and Portraits of a Few of the People I’ve Made Cry. She has published short stories and essays in The Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Prize Stories, Ploughshares, Southern Review, New York Times, New England Review, and Chicago Tribune. She is a recipient of the Grace Paley Prize in Short Fiction, Ploughshares’ Zacharis Award for a first book, and the Society of Midland Authors’ Prize for best adult fiction. She teaches in the graduate creative writing programs at Northwestern University and Regis University and lives in Evanston, IL. www.christinesneed.com. About the Publisher: Electric Literature is an independent publisher amplifying the power of storytelling through digital innovation. Electric Literature’s weekly fiction magazine, Recommended Reading, invites established authors, indie presses, and literary magazines to recommended great fiction. Once a month we feature our own recommendation of original, previously unpublished fiction. Recommended Reading is supported by the Amazon Literary Partnership, the New York State Council on the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Arts. For other links from Electric Literature, follow us, or sign up for our eNewsletter.


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In “Let’s Play Doctor,” a story culled from Mazza’s new book, Charlatan: New and Selected Stories, edited by fellow fiction writer Gina Frangello (Frangello’s introduction and Rick Moody’s foreword are terrific), we meet Dee, a young woman married three years and wrestling with her desire for Dr. Shea, the surgeon who performs a hernia operation on her at the beginning of In “Let’s Play Doctor,” a story culled from Mazza’s new book, Charlatan: New and Selected Stories, edited by fellow fiction writer Gina Frangello (Frangello’s introduction and Rick Moody’s foreword are terrific), we meet Dee, a young woman married three years and wrestling with her desire for Dr. Shea, the surgeon who performs a hernia operation on her at the beginning of the story and later visits her in an anesthesia-induced hallucination. What Mazza pulls off in this simultaneously erotic and disturbing dream sequence is something I don’t think I’ve ever seen before on the page: she commingles Dee’s physical desire for Dr. Shea with her fear of violation through both the controlled violence of surgery and adulterous sex. - Christine Sneed --- About the Author: Cris Mazza’s latest book is Charlatan: New and Selected Stories. Mazza has seventeen other titles of fiction and literary nonfiction including her last book, Something Wrong With Her, a hybrid real-time memoir; her first novel How to Leave a Country, which won the PEN/Nelson Algren Award for book-length fiction; and the critically acclaimed Is It Sexual Harassment Yet? She is a native of Southern California and is now a professor in the Program for Writers at the University of Illinois at Chicago. About the Guest Editor: Christine Sneed is the author of The Virginity of Famous Men, Paris He Said, Little Known Facts, and Portraits of a Few of the People I’ve Made Cry. She has published short stories and essays in The Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Prize Stories, Ploughshares, Southern Review, New York Times, New England Review, and Chicago Tribune. She is a recipient of the Grace Paley Prize in Short Fiction, Ploughshares’ Zacharis Award for a first book, and the Society of Midland Authors’ Prize for best adult fiction. She teaches in the graduate creative writing programs at Northwestern University and Regis University and lives in Evanston, IL. www.christinesneed.com. About the Publisher: Electric Literature is an independent publisher amplifying the power of storytelling through digital innovation. Electric Literature’s weekly fiction magazine, Recommended Reading, invites established authors, indie presses, and literary magazines to recommended great fiction. Once a month we feature our own recommendation of original, previously unpublished fiction. Recommended Reading is supported by the Amazon Literary Partnership, the New York State Council on the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Arts. For other links from Electric Literature, follow us, or sign up for our eNewsletter.

1 review for Let’s Play Doctor (Electric Literature's Recommended Reading Book 284)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Michael D Jerichow

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