The Complexities of One Man’s Life, With Added Dog: A Review of Mary Miller’s “Biloxi”

Biloxi cover

When it comes to finding ugliness, unexpected beauty, and weirdness in everyday life, no author does it quite like Mary Miller. Her understated, straightforward prose is a treasure trove of illuminating morsels that strip away pretense and reflect humanity in all its glorious range: unpleasantness, pettiness, aching, love, hope, heartbreak, longing, lust, depression, humor, and confusion abound. At once a novel and a sociological treatise of loneliness and heartbreak, Biloxi, Miller’s latest novel, is a hybrid narrative that’s part novel, part love letter to human darkness, and part ethnographical observation of an old man and his dog. Oh, and it’s all strangely beautiful and engrossing. 

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Sunday Stories: “Stakeout”

Stakeout by Mary Miller I’m in my boyfriend’s van with its newly tinted windows, parked outside of a lady’s house. His job is to follow the lady wherever she goes and take pictures. Ideally, his job is to photograph this lady climbing a ladder or doing jumping jacks or I don’t know what so her insurance doesn’t have to pay. So far we’ve followed her to Walmart and then to CVS and then through the drive-thru at Raising Cane’s where […]

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Mary Miller on the Making of “Always Happy Hour”

The stories in Mary Miller’s new collection Always Happy Hour unfold along unpredictable lines, whether she’s writing about the way that questions of class fracture a friendship or chronicling a young woman becoming peripherally involved in a sinister crime. I’ve been an admirer of Miller’s work since reading her first collection, Big World, especially the way that she’s able to take the reader into the minds of characters in unexpectedly, somewhat askew situations. We conversed via email about her new […]

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