Hollis Clayton is in trouble. His wife has decamped for the summer, leaving him to pursue his increasingly overwhelming compulsions: drinking; spying on neighbors; worrying about the fate of an abducted local girl; avoiding his editor, who is on the verge of rejecting his new collection of stories; and confronting as obliquely as possible the recent death of his young son. Meanwhile, he is spending more time with Jack Daniels and a stubbornly persistent stray dog than with anyone else, including his girlfriend Marissa, who has either abandoned him or been abandoned by him, he’s not sure which. A tender and comic portrait of suburban despair, Fireworks details the events of one strange summer in which a man’s troubled soul hangs in the balance. In her perceptive exploration of Hollis’s disintegrating life, Elizabeth Winthrop gives us an unforgettably powerful portrait of an anguished man, one who is both endearingly flawed and vividly real.
From the Trade Paperback edition.