Devils in the Sugar Shop.

AuthorMercer, Todd
PositionBook review

Work Title: Devils in the Sugar Shop

Work Author(s): Timothy Schaffert

Unbridled Books

Softcover $14.95, 256 pages


ISBN: 9781932961331

Reviewer: Todd Mercer

"'You go through life...' 'thinking you've pretty much seen it all.' You think that maybe you're even a little bit on the edge of things, she thought, a little daring. Then you get a peek of true underbelly, and you realize just how innocent you are," the author writes

This multi-protagonist story overlays the uncelebrated cornhusker spirit of Omaha, Nebraska, "...probably the most land-locked place on earth." Surprise can still be generated there by a misaddressed e-mail reading, "anyway I can't come tonight. I've got that orgy, remember?" Less high-stakes but chock full of revelation is a playfully burlesque schtupperware party which DeeDee throws at Ashley's house. Laughing over a cornucopia of cartoonish marital aids are their artist friend Viv, who keeps her involvement with DeeDee's ex hush hush, and Peach, an unsettling erotic writing student of Ashley's. Peach owns a bookstore with her more literate twin sister, Plum. In her free hours she is having a torrid affair with Ashley's husband, he of the notorious note.

Schaffert's previous novels are The Phantom Limbs of the Rollow Sisters and The Singing and Dancing Daughters of God, a Spring 2006 selection of Barnes and Noble's Discover Great New Writers program. He is an editorial contributor to The Reader, Omaha's alternative paper and also serves as director of the Downtown Omaha Litfest.

Devils in the Sugar Shop includes a substantial element of humor. Some bits are jubilantly absurd, others show wry...

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