Johnny Too Bad

A collection by "a generous and lyric storyteller" (San Francisco Chronicle) known for his tragicomic voice and his unforgettable and lively characters.

In John Dufresne's stories people are caught unawares by trouble and opportunity in the act of going about their daily lives. A romantic woman, involved with her married boss, is proposed to by a Bulgarian on a tourist visa in search of a green card and must choose between a wedding and a love affair. A doctor who has killed two women escorts a flamboyant woman home to tell her about his rage and her foolishness. Four young brothers wander into a man's backyard claiming to be foster children. They share lunch and search for the foster home that doesn't exist. After a man tells his wife that he's leaving her and his children for his new lover, he's found dead in the morning. It's up to our literary hero to solve the mystery—murder, he wrote. A cross between William Faulkner (Times-Picayune) and John Irving (Detroit Free Press), Dufresne once again masterfully charts the power of truth and lies and the magic hidden in the mundane.

“[There is] verbal dexterity everywhere in evidence in Johnny Too Bad . . . and a brilliant literary detective story that’s worth the price of admission on its own.” — New York Times Book Review

“Dufresne has a knack for knowing what people think and, more specifically, how people think. . . . With this collection, he bores a hole into his brain and peels back the layers so that we can take a look inside: neuroses, secret whims, private desires.” — San Francisco Chronicle

“Unfolds like a dream . . . a deliciously readable collection.” — New Orleans Times-Picayune


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