McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern Volume 14

McSweeney's Quarterly Concern Volume 14
2004Dave Eggers ∙ 306 pgs

These compilations are odd. I mean writing, and what you think of it, are so subjective. That’s what makes McSweeney’s anthologies both so good and bad at the same time. It’s good to read some hidden gems from relatively unknown authors that have been unearthed by Eggers and his cohorts. It’s bad to have to read a bizarre story about some centurion in ancient somewhere-or-other. Good or bad, every story has its own special something. My favorite is a first-person report on the great gerbils of central Asia. It’s a great piece of pseudo-reporting that is funny and informative and injected with personality. Eggers seems to try to include a wide range of subject matter and styles in his literary journal, which in itself is a good thing. Regardless of what you think about some of the actual writing, it’s always nice to see something different.