If you've lingered around here for a while, you may recall that I've sung the praises of Simon van Booy as an editor of an excellent trio of books of philosophy. I had a lot of good things to say both about van Booy's project in the abstract, and his execution in particular.
I've never read van Booy's short fiction, but I'm not surprised it's been successful; he has a knack for putting a whole lot of story in only a few words. I knew this from his introductions to the Why... books, but now know it even more from the first seven pages of his debut novel. Hell, you could throw out the Prologue and only consider the first two pages, and you'd still know what I'm talking about.
Andre Dubus called van Booy a cross between Fitzgerald and Duras, and I don't think this is far off. His writing reminds you of the types of authors you know placed every word on the page with the delicacy and purposefulness of a groom sliding a ring onto his bride's finger.
So do this: go download the sample of the e-book. Read the prologue and the first two pages of the first chapter. If you're not sold on this book after that, you've got twenty more pages to give it a chance.
But I don't think you'll need them. I didn't.
FTC Disclosure: This is based on a copy of the book I received from the publisher.