Carrie Brown, "A Splendid Life"

A psychiatrist retires and returns to his childhood home.

(from One Story 116)

Petey’s a funny old guy. I mean, he’s dealing with some guilt and regret and all, but he’s a charming and spry drunk coot. There was something slick about the way he pounded some vodka and took a spin on the lake in a rowboat. His sudden drunkenness is as much a surprise to the reader as it is to him. I haven’t read much John Updike, but this story gave me some of that vibe, a sort of amber-tinted glow around a bygone ugliness. Good stuff.
Read an interview with the author here.

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