List is a curative mix of satire and sympathy. In these glimpses of middle America, lists order the characters’ lives, capturing their obsessions, cataloging their complaints, accounting for their desires, and serving as prayers toward ways of life that might work.
“The stories in List succeed by mixing the sting of satire with its antidote, a healthy dose of sympathy. While the stories skewer the ambitions and materialistic desires of readers, they also create an emotional landscape replete with the hilarity and humility of human vulnerability. This collection has a heart as big as the great Midwest.”--Lynne Kilpatrick, author of In the House
“The fictions comprising Matt Roberson’s List—spare, comic, haunting, addictively readable—revolve around the gadgets, mad cleanliness, and bland vans unable to hold off the deadly everydaynesses called the suburban middle class. The characters find themselves shell-shocked by the vacant lists their worlds have become. They try to convince themselves something can always change, but the narratives they inhabit prove it can’t, it doesn’t, things will just keep on keeping on.”--Lance Olsen, author of Calendar of Regrets
“Matthew Roberson’s precise and melancholy List anatomizes the thing- and desire-cluttered world of the middle American suburbanite, a Garden of Earthly Delights perpetually overshadowed by precariously balanced piles of tools, diapers, bills, humiliation, toys, death, Xanax, kids, pets, half-finished home improvements, Viagra, LPs, nostalgia, and the vague sense that maybe things could still work out. Roberson demonstrates once again that he is a master of contemporary sadness.”--Michael Mejia, author of Forgetfulness