Ah, behold thy Sins and Virtues! Both get poor suckers in hot water all the time. ALMOST DEADLY, ALMOST GOOD explores how human nature is just a flip-floppy beautiful mess, and the difference between good and bad is near impossible to discern. With skewed but compassionate perspective, Alice Kaltman gives us sinners and saints to love equally, each one perfectly flawed, just like the rest of us.
"I adore this collection. Alice Kaltman has outdone herself. Ever the sharp-eyed witness to the human condition, here she gives us fourteen perfectly penned short stories: half in the first section entitled "The Sins" and the rest, contrastingly, in "The Virtues." But lo and behold, there's really no contrast at all. Kaltman's people are neither entirely good nor entirely bad. They're layered, complex, flawed and fractious, and 100% relatable. We get them because we are them. Story after brilliantly written story, we're shown our own fears, our own foibles, our own forbidden desires, and tenderest heartaches. These are stories of human beings under pressure, at their most "changeable" moments, and we readers can't look away. Nor do we want to. With candor, wisdom, and humor, almost deadly, almost good reminds us to be good to ourselves and to each other for we are all at once, beautiful and aching and ridiculous."
– Kathy Fish, author of Wild Life: Collected Works from 2003-2018.
"With passion and wit, Alice Kaltman nails what it means to be human in Almost Deadly, Almost Good, her brilliant new collection centering on the vices and virtues that give shape to our lives. These fourteen stories crackle with energy, each a live wire ready to give the reader a jolt of both surprise and recognition. In Kaltman's capable hands, we're all almost deadly, almost good and fully better for it."
– Julie Innis, author of Three Squares a Day with Occasional Torture
"Alice Kaltman’s Almost Deadly, Almost Good gives rise to the philosophical contemplations of of virtue and sin—blending the two ideas—giving us reason to believe that perhaps, one is no different than the other depending on the situation. Consider each story as an apartment—then, the linked collection as a whole, is an apartment complex with thin and papery walls, leading us to secrets which were never meant to be whispered, and as we find ourselves judging these characters, Kaltman’s words, in turn, our judging us at the same time, thus bringing forth one of our most common elements of human nature—our flaws. It it through these mirrors, that, maybe, just maybe, there is a chance of redemption and peace—just a bit of light to keep us going. Almost Deadly, Almost Good is both a gritty and tender exploration of all us—haunting and enlightening."
– Shome Dasgupta, author of Spectacles
"Alice Kaltman is our most human of writers, crafting work which brings insight, empathy and respect to the confusing lives we lead and wish we could make sense of. With almost deadly, almost good, her dazzling new collection of intersecting stories, Kaltman continues to do what she does so beautifully, imbuing her characters with lives, loves, triumphs and tragedies that feel real and true, while leaving her lucky readers exhilarated and longing for more."
– Ben Tanzer, author of UPSTATE, Be Cool, Lost in Space & Orphans
"In Almost Deadly, Almost Good, Alice Kaltman's stories embody the angel and devil we all carry on our shoulders. She understands the muckiness of existing in an imperfect world, and that, try as we might, we're always just a hair away from getting things right or wrong. These stories dazzle with Kaltman's wit and rich, complex characters who you'll want to hug and scream at in equal turns, because they remind us of the best and worst parts of ourselves, all the mistakes we've ever made and all the good we wish we'd done.”
– Chris Gonzales, author of I’m Not Hungry But I Could Eat
Alice Kaltman is the author of the story collection STAGGERWING, the novels WAVEHOUSE, THE TANTALIZING TALE OF GRACE MINNAUGH, and DAWG TOWNE. Alice’s stories appear in journals like Lost Balloon, The Pinch, Joyland, Hobart and BULL, and in numerous anthologies. She’s not thrilled by the sound of her own voice, but you might like it. If so, you can hear her read her work at Micro Podcasts, Elevator Stories, and No Contact. Alice splits her time between Brooklyn and Montauk, NY where she lives, surfs, and swims with her husband the sculptor Daniel Wiener and Ollie the Wonder Dog.
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