Trillium Book Awards Author Reading 2015

Those Girls

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Greenboathouse Press, 2006

From the publisher's website:

In Those Girls, Jessica Westhead's new collection of short stories, the style of Samuel Beckett meets the humour and content of a Dilbert cartoon. Westhead writes about modern suburban life with pathos, wit and razor-sharp dialogue. To read these stories is to take pleasure in the mundane, daily language we hear everywhere we go. Few people have the touch necessary to pull this off without seeming condescending or rude, but Westhead does it effortlessly. Those Girls narrates a bunch of guys whose lives are preoccupied with women — the women both in their lives and in their fantasies that they never quite understand. This is a book about how rarely people relate and the inexplicable nature of gender. These guys are neither articulate nor successful; they fumble through life spouting office clichés and eating combos. They talk about women at work, during lunch, or overhear them on the commuter train. They take advice from the wrong people and get obsessed with their co-workers' wives. These guys constantly try to get the attention of those girls and figure out what makes them tick, but all to no avail.