Series: SFWP Literary Award Winners
Paperback: 244 pages
Cover Design: Gwen Grafft; Photo: Jody Potter
About the Book:The stories in Muscle Cars explore the unique and sometimes flawed relationships between men, their families, and their friends. Featuring a diverse cast of inarticulate misfits—including a compulsive body builder obsessed by the death of his brother; a former boxer forced to sell his prized 1946 New York Yankees autographed baseball; and two boyhood friends who plan to steal Ted Williams’ scientifically frozen head—this stand-out debut from Pushcart-nominated Eoannou is a powerful journey through the humor, darkness, and neuroses of the modern American Everyman. 2013 Literary Awards Program runner-up Stephen G. Eoannou holds an MFA from Queens University of Charlotte and an MA from Miami University. His work has been nominated for two Pushcart Awards, awarded an Honor Certificate from The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, and was honored with the Best Short Screenplay Award at the 36th Starz Denver Film Festival. He lives and writes in his hometown of Buffalo, New York, the setting and inspiration for much of his work.
The stories in Stephen G. Eoannou’s collection are, as the title suggests, very much like muscle cars—lean, powerful, fast, and gorgeous. Eoannou evokes, in seventeen richly textured and often hilarious visions of Buffalo life, what it means to be male—son, brother, father, spouse, lover, half-baked friend, sports fanatic, neighbor—in the 21st century. These stories will transport you. Enjoy the ride. –K. L. Cook, Author of Love Songs for the Quarantined and Last Call
In his collection, Stephen G. Eoannou proves masterful at revealing that razor’s edge inside everyday American man, where the power of role and the power of raw emotion almost balance out. He throws light on the mysterious interiors of husbands, fathers, sons, brothers, soldiers, compatriots, these streets of Buffalo past and present–all the while keeping track of the darker currents that run beneath the surface. And no matter how sympathetic, how human his storytellers are, there always seems to come a moment when you have to decide if this guy–the one with the plot to steal a frozen head or auction a baseball or shave his weightlifter legs–is brilliant or insane. Muscle Cars is a magnificent debut. –Ashley Warlick, author of Seek The Living and The Summer After June
Part Richard Russo, part Bruce Springsteen, part OTB parlors and Cutlass Supremes, Eoannou’s debut collection is all—all—heart. These are tough, ruminative, cunning and tough—did I say tough?—stories of people trying to make it, one way and another, for better and worse. A fine first collection, and I look forward to the next. –Brett Lott, author of Jewel, an Oprah Book Club Selection.