Alex Mindt on Fathers
The title story of this highly praised book, about a small-town Texas science teacher threatening to flunk his high school’s brilliantly talented football star, sets the collection’s timely theme, the conflict between the image of how American men are supposed to act and the way they secretly feel like acting.
This theme is skillfully modulated in almost all of the book’s eleven selections—from “Stories of the Hunt,” about a boy discovering that his ostensibly he-man woodsman father doesn’t in fact know the first thing about tracking deer, to “Immigration,” about a Vietnamese refugee working in a Las Vegas casino and dreaming of becoming the worlds greatest Elvis impersonator.
Alex Mindt seems instinctively to know all the angles of story-telling, from quickly building dramatic tension to creating vivid characters through a minimum of dialogue. His every turn of phrase smolders in the reader’s mind.