Short stories by Sarah Shun-Lien Bynum

Sarah Shun-lien Bynum is the author of two novels—Ms. Hempel Chronicles, a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award, and Madeleine Is Sleeping, a finalist for the National Book Award and winner of the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize—and a story collection, Likes. Her fiction has appeared in many magazines and anthologies, including The New YorkerPloughsharesTin House, and TheBest American Short Stories. The recipient of an O. Henry Award, a Whiting Award, and an NEA Fellowship, she was named one of “20 Under 40” fiction writers by The New Yorker. She lives in Los Angeles.

Listing 7 stories.

A seventh-grade English teacher copes with the recent death of her father and assigns a memoir that her students love reading. However, their parents question her for her pedagogical choices because of the swear words and provocative topics in the book.

When a married couple announces that they are getting a divorce, their best friends who are also a couple are forced to confront what this configuration means for their social life.

A father struggles to connect with his twelve-year-old daughter who is plagued by self-doubt and isolation, enraptured by social media, and debilitated by tendonitis. Despite her detachment, his daughter may be the only one who can save him from his post-election disillusionment with the country's failures.

In modern-day Los Angeles, a young lesbian woman lives next door to an actress she's been a fan of since the actress was an underground drag queen in New York. The actress pitches an idea for a TV show to the woman, whose partner is a children's show producer.

A woman who has moved to the countryside to write a chapter on an American philosopher reflects on and recovers from her recent miscarriage.

A would-be burglar enters a suburban home. In the same town, a woman drives home for an exterminator appointment, and her husband tries to write the season premiere of a time-traveling crime show.

When her co-worker returns pregnant and happy from a year of travel, a seventh grade English teacher reflects on her dissatisfaction with her own life and her longing for decisiveness.