The Talking Book

Nonprofit Audiobook Publisher of Indie Lit

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By: Deb Olin Unferth
Narrated By: Deb Olin Unferth and Edward Carey
Length: 4 hrs and 57 mins
Release Date: 08-28-17
Print Pub: Graywolf Press


For more than 10 years, Deb Olin Unferth has been publishing startlingly askew, wickedly comic, cutting-edge fiction in magazines such as Granta,Harper's MagazineMcSweeney'sNOON, and The Paris Review. Her stories are revered by some of the best American writers of our day, but until now there has been no stand-alone collection of her short fiction.

Wait Till You See Me Dance consists of several extraordinary longer stories as well as a selection of intoxicating very short stories. In the chilling "The First Full Thought of Her Life", a shooter gets in position while a young girl climbs a sand dune. In "Voltaire Night", students compete to tell a story about the worst thing that ever happened to them. In "Stay Where You Are", two oblivious travelers in Central America are kidnapped by a gunman they assume to be an insurgent - but the gunman has his own problems.

An Unferth story lures you in with a voice that seems amiable and lighthearted, but it swerves in sudden and surprising ways that reveal, in terrifying clarity, the rage, despair, and profound mournfulness that have taken up residence at the heart of the American dream. These stories often take place in an exaggerated or heightened reality, a quality that is reminiscent of the work of Donald Barthelme, Lorrie Moore, and George Saunders, but in Unferth's unforgettable collection she carves out territory that is entirely her own.



"Deb Olin Unferth's stories are so smart, fast, full of heart, and distinctive in voice - each an intense little thought-system going out earnestly in search of strange new truths. What an important and exciting talent."

- George Saunders

“This assemblage of down-and-out moments is delivered with a wit and concision reminiscent of Lydia Davis and Diane Williams, a wry intelligence and keen irony that don’t prevent Unferth’s prose from offering deep emotional intimacy. . . . Unferth’s book is rich with surprises, small and large. . . . Again and again in these pages, Unferth swerves from the mundane to the extraordinary, from biting to soaringly celebratory, often in a single sentence.”

—New York Times Book Review

“One of the most important voices in fiction’s long-awaited collection of short fiction is a fascinating must-read.”


“Deb Olin Unferth is one of the most daring and entertaining writers in America today.”

—Sam Lipsyte

“Deb Olin Unferth deals in turns of phrase and turns of luck. . . . [Wait Till You See Me Dance] is a limber collection with the dexterity and precision to launch in most any direction.”

—Electric Literature


Deb Olin Unferth is the author of Minor RobberiesVacation, and Revolution: The Year I Fell in Love and Went to Join the War, which was a finalist for a National Book Critics Circle Award in autobiography. She lives in Austin, Texas.

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