EXCERPT: "The Complete Short Stories of James Purdy,” by James Purdy

  • Updated: July 20, 2013 - 2:00 PM

James Purdy’s short stories are perfect little blows to the heart, disturbing and completely original examinations of lonely people on the fringes of society. In his introduction to this collection, John Waters suggests that readers consider the book “a ten-pound box of poison chocolates.” Here is how one story, “Goodnight, Sweetheart,” begins:

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