"How long did I walk? It seemed like forever. The yellow moonlight pouring through the windows made my socks look like rats squirming across the carpet. There were rats in my brain, too, gnawing at the gray matter...." [Mark SaFranko, 'Loners'] Murderers and serial killers...Jilted lovers and outcasts... Broken men and lost women.... Loners. Cutting across genres for more"How long did I walk? It seemed like forever. The yellow moonlight pouring through the windows made my socks look like rats squirming across the carpet. There were rats in my brain, too, gnawing at the gray matter...." [Mark SaFranko, 'Loners'] Murderers and serial killers...Jilted lovers and outcasts... Broken men and lost women.... Loners. Cutting across genres for more than 20 years, Mark SaFranko has excelled in charting the life of the outsider. This collection includes eight of SaFranko's short stories... all shot through with his trademark -- and eye-opening -- realism. New York Times bestselling crime author Seymour Shubin ['Anyone's My Name'] introduces the stories, hailing 'Loners' as "a collection of brilliant short stories that had me twisting inwardly as I read them...They are magnificent."...
|Format Type||:||trade paperback|
|Number of Pages||:||198 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
The psychologist Erich Fromm once pronounced that ‘Man is alone but he is related at the same time.’ Furthering his theme Fromm stated ‘He is alone in as much as he is a unique entity, not identical with anyone else, and aware of himself as a separate entity... yet he cannot bear to be alone to be unrelated to his fellow man. His happiness depends on the solidarity he feels with his fellow man’. And this is what SaFranko’s Loners, his only published collection of short fiction, brings home to us.Each of the main characters in these stories is looking for a connection to life and therefore his fellow man be it by escaping it, destroying it or embracing it. They look to for others to share their lives with, albeit for the most part fleetingly and oftentimes failing to do so but this is the solidarity we have with them. Like the woman who becomes fascinated by the customer who never leaves the motel room she lets to him in ‘The Man In Unit 24’ or the anger felt by Jonathan’s resentment toward his sedentary existence and his budding anger, even the serial killer in ‘Just Next Door’ keeps souvenirs and sometimes whole bodies of his victims so as to remember them. To connect with them.Some of these stories can be brutal, some less so more subtle but in the end all of them have to do with one thing and that is that we as a race do not exist in isolation whether our thoughts and experiences and how we act or react to and on them may be unique we all share the same struggle, we all fight the same fight, to live, to relate, whether we we succeed is unimportant it’s the need that the contents of this book highlights. Hence Loners is indispensible reading for anyone out there who wants to look further into themselves and outwards onto their reality. It’s also worth mentioning that to connect with the fictional is still a connection, so if this book is your only companion cling to it and you will never be fully bereft of the need for solidarity.In other words read the fucking thing.
Mark SaFranko’s _Loners_ is about hard cases—isolates who do all sorts of inhman things, and yet who suffer. They speak with detachment and a kind of final isolation that asks no quarter, and expects nothing but the revenge of the law. In the novella “Just Next Door,” a serial killer advises the reader whom he eerily converses with not to stand out in any way, and “stay within yourself.” Between murders, all the result of envy and contempt, he leads a bored existence with his mother, dispensing homely advice to his reader—“you.” Equal explosions of “the rage of the meek” run throughout the stories, my favorite being “Alley Night,” where the protagonist, a formerly successful man who realizes he did what loved ones, teachers, and friends laid out for him, tries to commit suicide by having himself attacked by thieves he has intentionally angered. But here we also have “revenge of the meek” (from Saramago’s _The Double_) . Jonathan turns on his attackers with a powerful surge of strength. . He’s on his way back—to another lucrative job and more success. He’s a kind of Everyman, really. Was SaFranko thinking of Hammett’s “Flitcraft parable”, where a successful man almost is the victim of a falling safe. He narrowly escapes, leaves him job and wife, but soon discovers that no more safes, and no more assailants, will attack. He gets a new job and family and is in fact the same person all over again. The first story is equally incisive—but it is about renewal, but not like that of _Alley Night_.. A woman is so attached to a man staying at her motel that, as his dangerous and outcast nature become more evident – she needs to get as close to this outcast as she can. He is a fascinating contrast to the men in the stories I mentioned above, but as an outcast, he is very much like them. Everyone should read this—SaFranko’s sense of an ending is amazing, and as he pursues it , he flirts with outcast status himself. Maybe that is why a few protagonists are also writers or artists. There’s a lot going on here you just do not want to miss.
I am a big fan of SaFranko's short stories. They are absolute page-turners and are full of insights on human motivations. This collection is quite dark but thrilling nonetheless.