Seconds of Pleasure

Neil LaBute
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ISBN 9780571221226 Format Paperback
Published 21/10/2004 Length 240 pages

About Book

A provocative collection of short fiction by award-winning writer, director and playwright Neil LaBute, whose work 'continues to probe the fascinating dark side of individualism' (New Yorker). In this, his début prose collection, he once more exhibits his compelling take on the shadowy terrain of the human heart.

Seductive and disturbing, the stories in Seconds of Pleasure are not for the faint of heart. Each potent and pithy tale finds men and women exploiting - or at the mercy of - the hidden fault lines that separate them. In 'Time Share', a woman leaves her family at their vacation home after discovering her husband in a compromising situation; in 'Open All Night', a generous dancer rescues a man stranded in the parking lot of a strip club; in 'Boo-Boo', a middle-aged man obsesses over a scab on the calf of a pretty young girl; and in 'Soft Target', a vain Hollywood actor gets his come-uppance. Infused with LaBute's trademark pitch-black humour, these stories vivisect human relations in a way that is at once intimate, brutal, and unsettlingly familiar.

  • About Neil LaBute

    Neil LaBute received his Master of Fine Arts degree in dramatic writing from New York University and was the recipient of a literary fellowship to study at the Royal Court Theatre, London. He also attended the Sundance Institute's Playwrights Lab and is the Playwright-in- Residence with MCC Theatre in New York City.

    LaBute's plays include: bash: latter-day plays, The Shape of Things, The Mercy Seat, The Distance From Here, Autobahn, Fat Pig (Olivier Award nominated for Best Comedy), Some Girl(s), This Is How It Goes, Wrecks, Filthy Talk for Troubled Times, In a Dark Dark House, Reasons to Be Pretty (Tony Award nominated for Best Play) and The Break of Noon. In the spring of 2011 his play In a Forest, Dark and Deep premiered in London's West End. LaBute is also the author of Seconds of Pleasure, a collection of short fiction which was published by Grove Atlantic.

    His films include In the Company of Men (New York Critics' Circle Award for Best First Feature and the Filmmaker Trophy at the Sundance Film Festival), Your Friends and Neighbors, Nurse Betty, Possession, The Shape of Things, a film adaptation of his play of the same title, The Wicker Man, Lakeview Terrace and Death at a Funeral.

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