Short satirical linked stories on the reaction to Trump, the hypocrisies of liberalism and living in a post-truth America
Almost-true stories for a post-truth world
Wrong! Not Nice! Sad!
A Manhattan party on election night. Liberal media types gather with big grins and high-end canapés to watch the Trump-Clinton results come in, expecting a smooth victory for Hillary. As the outcome shifts and they descend into panic, the host stands abruptly before her guests, confessing a shocking crime of years before.
What follows is a series of witty, cutting, addictive tales of Trump times, portraying Democrats and Republicans in a divided America, from powerful to powerless, angry to thwarted, from a Starbucks barista who dreams of making it on the stage, to a couple whose online date goes bitterly awry, to a charmingly wicked U.S. businessman living undercover in rural Italy. Basket of Deplorables is a timely take on the craziness of today: almost-true fiction for a post-truth world.
Born in London and raised in Vancouver, Tom Rachman was a foreign correspondent for the Associated Press stationed in Rome, then an editor at the International Herald Tribune in Paris. He is the author of two novels, the international bestseller The Imperfectionists; The Rise and Fall of Great Powers and a short stories collection Basket of Deplorables. He lives in London.
Inventive and amusing . . . Irresistible, like a blend of Roald Dahl's short fiction, Charlie Brooker's Black Mirror series and David Foster Wallace's Brief Interviews with Hideous Men . . . Once today's news has become tomorrow's online archive, this will be the one still worth reading — Claire Lowdon, Times Literary Supplement
These five linked stories share the same deft characterisation, buoyant wit and imaginative richness of Rachman's lauded novels . . . Prescient and clever and it is a quick and delightful read. — Nick Curtis, Evening Standard
Rachman's masterful collection provides an early literary look at Trump-era America . . . Slick, entertaining hot takes from a former journalist sacrifice nothing in sophistication despite their speedy turnaround . . . Superbly choreographed . . . These bang-up-to-the-minute stories feel like essential reading as we get to grips with a bizarre new era — Peter Beech, Guardian
Rachman has delivered a survey of contemporary America with a dash of sci-fi that disses liberal snowflakes and triumphalist Trumpsters alike . . . addressing the post-truth world. Rachman is also astute about how dependent we have become on the technology that now feeds us fake news and distraction — Nick Curtis, i Paper
Diverting and satisfying tales, laced with just the right amount of caustic wit — Alastair Mabbott, Sunday Herald
Tom Rachman paints the post-truth world in broad brushstrokes . . . Spry observations of (mostly) larger-than-life characters who represent the angry, bewildered citizens of a divided America — Eithne Farry, Daily Mail
Rachman is a clever and compelling writer with a terrific turn of phrase and his finger on the pulse of our fast-changing world. These stories are a pleasure to read from start to finish — David Herman, Jewish Chronicle
A neat web of morality tales about dating, faking and going online in post-truth America . . . Brilliantly savage and satirical . . . Rather than a basket of deplorables, he gives us a gallery of grotesques, whose comedy rests on the corruption of their communication. Talk is Rachman's medium, and his talkers maintain perfect pitch throughout. — Frances Wilson, Oldie
Clever wit, sharp observation, and a thread linking them all . . . You'll love this . . . and you'll have a good laugh — Jon Wise, Sunday Sport
Terrifically good. Just read them in one swoop. — India Knight
The premise is a terrific one . . . Rachman's deft cultural references and his acute skewering of American culture make for uncomfortably precise satire — Sophie Gilbert, Atlantic
Rachman's fictional short stories somehow provide much comfort and understanding in a bonkers era . . . This might well be the first literary example of "When life gives you lemons..." — Emerald Street