If you haven't read D'Ambrosio before this is a good place to start. These essays, many of which appeared in the Stranger, are intense. His writing is immediate; full of a love of language, probing and wide-ranging. He writes of suicide; the puzzling aspects of experience; family and its fragility. D'Ambrosio is a rare talent and this book is a treasure. Did I say his short stories are also incredible?
“Charles D'Ambrosio's essays are excitingly good. They are relevant in a way that makes you read them out loud to anyone who happens to be around. Absolutely accessible and incredibly intelligent, his work is an astounding relief -- as though someone is finally trying to put all the disparate, desperate puzzle pieces of the world together again.”
— Jill Owens, Powell's Books, Inc, Portland, OR
Charles D'Ambrosio's essay collection Orphans spawned something of a cult following. In the decade since the tiny limited-edition volume sold out its print run, its devotees have pressed it upon their friends, students, and colleagues, only to find themselves begging for their copy's safe return. For anyone familiar with D'Ambrosio's writing, this enthusiasm should come as no surprise. His work is exacting and emotionally generous, often as funny as it is devastating. Loitering gathers those eleven original essays with new and previously uncollected work, so that a broader audience might discover one of our great living essayists. No matter his subject--Native American whaling, a Pentecostal "hell house," Mary Kay Letourneau, the work of J.D. Salinger, or, most often, his own family--D'Ambrosio approaches each piece with a singular voice and point of view; each essay, while unique and surprising, is unmistakably his own.
About the Author
Charles D'Ambrosio is the author two collections of short stories, "The Point" (a finalist for the Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award) and "The Dead Fish Museum" (a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award), as well as the essay collection "Orphans." His work has appeared frequently in "The New Yorker," as well as in "Tin House," "The Paris Review," "Zoetrope All-Story," "A Public Space," and "Story." He's been the recipient of the Whiting Writers' Award, an Academy Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Lannan Foundation Fellowship, and a USA Rasmuson Fellowship. He lives in Portland, OR.