Please take a moment to review Hachette Book Group's updated Privacy Policy: read the updated policy here.

Hall of Small Mammals

Hall of Small Mammals

Ridiculously good...[There’s a] feeling of being inside a bubble while reading Mr. Pierce, and it is a bubble you won’t want to leave‘ Janet Maslin, New York Times

The stories in Thomas Pierce’s Hall of Small Mammals take place at the confluence of the commonplace and the cosmic, the intimate and the infinite. A fossil-hunter, a comedian, a hot- air balloon pilot, parents and children, believers and nonbelievers, the people in these stories are struggling to understand the absurdity and the magnitude of what it means to exist in a family, to exist in the world.

In Shirley Temple Three, a mother must shoulder her son’s burden – a cloned and resurrected woolly mammoth who wreaks havoc on her house, sanity, and faith. In The Real Alan Gass, a physicist in search of a mysterious particle called the ‘daisy’ spends her days with her boyfriend, Walker, and her nights with the husband who only exists in the world of her dreams, Alan Gass. Like the daisy particle itself – ‘forever locked in a curious state of existence and nonexistence, sliding back and forth between the two’ – the stories in Thomas Pierce’s Hall of Small Mammals are exquisite, mysterious, and inextricably connected.

From this enchanting primordial soup, Pierce’s voice emerges – a distinct and charming testament of the New South, melding contemporary concerns with their prehistoric roots to create a hilarious, deeply moving collection of stories.
Read More

Genre: Fiction & Related Items / Fiction: Special Features / Short Stories

On Sale: 7th December 2017

Price: £7.99

ISBN-13: 9780349134604


Pierce's masterful stories are wildly imaginative and deeply humane
Pierce's stories are beautifully written and suffused with mystery
Emily St. John Mandel, The Millions
Complex, mysterious and delightfully weird, every story in Hall of Small Mammals is a wild adventure
Ridiculously good... These stories never drift vaguely off into the ether. They are beautifully built, and their author has an especially deft way of finding just the right final flourish.... [There's a] feeling of being inside a bubble while reading Mr. Pierce, and it is a bubble you won't want to leave. This is such a fine collection that there's not a stinker in the bunch.... Mr. Pierce's originality, inventiveness, questing spiritual intelligence and animal fixation aren't easy to do justice to in the limited space here. But they're irrefutably good reasons to discover him for yourself
Janet Maslin, New York Times
A debut collection that reads like the work of a much older, established fiction master. The stories in Pierce's book explore the ordinary in the otherworldly, the surreal in the mundane, and the results are stunning and unexpected.... Pierce is an endlessly incisive and engaging writer. It's a book full of wisdom and emotion, with stories that explore what it means to live and die in a world filled with invisible things
Pierce mines the mysterious rift between fantasy and reality with the intricate skill of an archaeologist and the sheer wonder of an imaginative child
Short stories that will truly delight and amaze, many set in a near-future that is twisted and strange, but full of southern warmth and heart
Vanity Fair
Pierce clearly has talent to burn. A promising debut that studies hard-luck types from new and provocative perspectives
Kirkus Reviews
It will be tempting, but hard, for readers to choose a favourite among the stories here... Rich and complicated...These stories have that merry, postmodern humor, but also a classical love of real human emotion
New York Times Book Review
Full of compulsively addictive and delightfully strange fare
Publishers Weekly starred review
Pierce shows reverence for the Southern Gothic tradition on which he draws, while also bringing in a fresh dose of modern irreverence. He's a huge talent - one to keep an eye on