Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollectionsRobert Olen Butler
IN THE NEWS

Robert Olen Butler

MORE STORIES ABOUT:
FEATURED ARTICLES
ENTERTAINMENT
July 19, 2009 | Carolyn Kellogg
Robert Olen Butler is an author with a flair for the big concept. Inspired by the information that consciousness lasts for 1.5 minutes after decapitation, he wrote "Severance," 62 short (240-word) stories of the last thoughts of those, real and imagined, who've just lost their heads. Marie Antoinette, John the Baptist, Medusa, Cicero and a chicken all, uh, made the cut.
ARTICLES BY DATE
ENTERTAINMENT
August 31, 2009 | Jacob Silverman
If you must have a shtick, make it a good one. Robert Olen Butler is familiar with this dictum: His collection "Tabloid Dreams" was based on supermarket tabloids; the stories in "Had a Good Time" were drawn from vintage postcards; "Severance" was composed of 240-word pieces about the dying thoughts of the decapitated; and last year's "Intercourse" imagined the inner monologues of 50 famous couples as they had sex. Butler's new novel, "Hell," is...
Advertisement
NEWS
January 20, 1994 | RICHARD EDER, TIMES BOOK CRITIC
They meet cute. Walking in Greenwich Village, Ira Holloway, the narrator of "They Whisper," encounters Fiona, a sunny young woman who rounds the corner, smiles at him and walks on. Immediately she's back to explain that the smile was not a come-on but provoked by a funny-looking old man she'd just passed. In a moment she reappears; this time to make sure he's not feeling hurt.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 19, 2009 | Carolyn Kellogg
Robert Olen Butler is an author with a flair for the big concept. Inspired by the information that consciousness lasts for 1.5 minutes after decapitation, he wrote "Severance," 62 short (240-word) stories of the last thoughts of those, real and imagined, who've just lost their heads. Marie Antoinette, John the Baptist, Medusa, Cicero and a chicken all, uh, made the cut.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 31, 2009 | Jacob Silverman
If you must have a shtick, make it a good one. Robert Olen Butler is familiar with this dictum: His collection "Tabloid Dreams" was based on supermarket tabloids; the stories in "Had a Good Time" were drawn from vintage postcards; "Severance" was composed of 240-word pieces about the dying thoughts of the decapitated; and last year's "Intercourse" imagined the inner monologues of 50 famous couples as they had sex. Butler's new novel, "Hell," is...
BOOKS
March 29, 1992
Clear-cut logging is but one of the planetary anachronisms that have placed the earth in ecological peril. "Refrain!" You are merely in the vanguard in adjusting to changes all must make and live with if we are to survive. DOUGLAS HAMMOND Long Beach
BOOKS
October 22, 2006 | Lisa Teasley, Lisa Teasley's most recent novel is "Heat Signature."
IN "Severance," we are privy to the streams-of-consciousness that 62 heads experience upon being cut from their bodies. It is believed that after decapitation the head remains conscious for 90 seconds; at a heightened state of emotion, humans speak at a rate of 160 words per minute. Thus, Pulitzer Prize winner Robert Olen Butler gives us exactly 240 words for each of his heads. They are as varied as Medusa, Anne Boleyn, John the Baptist, the dragon slain by St.
BOOKS
January 23, 2000 | JONATHAN LEVI
The good news for all you folks who read about Edna Bradshaw of Bovary, Ala., in Robert Olen Butler's "Tabloid Dreams" is that she's back. The 1996 short story "Help Me Find My Spaceman Lover" in that collection was Edna's first-person account of her third-kind encounter with a spaceman. Back then, Edna was a fortysomething hairdresser living in a trailer park with her yellow cat, Eddie. One night, on her way back to her car in the parking lot of the local 24-hour Wal-Mart, she meets a spaceman.
NEWS
December 4, 1996 | ALLAN M. JALON, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
For most of his work, Robert Olen Butler's literary instinct has taken him to Vietnam and its culture. He's drawn fiction from his days there as a military spy and translator. In 1993, he won a Pulitzer Prize for "A Good Scent From a Strange Mountain," lyrical but somber tales drawn from the lives of Vietnamese immigrants in America.
BOOKS
January 25, 1998 | SUSIE LINFIELD, Susie Linfield is the acting director of the Cultural Reporting and Criticism Program at New York University. She is a contributing writer to Book Review
"The Deep Green Sea" opens with Le Thi Tien, a 26-year-old Vietnamese girl, in bed with Benjamin Cole, a 48-year-old American vet. They are strangers, and they make love: the passionate, earth-moving, life-shattering kind. Tien has told Ben three things: that she is a virgin; that her mother, who was a prostitute, is dead; and that her father, whom she never met and who was an American GI, is also deceased. The first two statements are lies.
BOOKS
October 22, 2006 | Lisa Teasley, Lisa Teasley's most recent novel is "Heat Signature."
IN "Severance," we are privy to the streams-of-consciousness that 62 heads experience upon being cut from their bodies. It is believed that after decapitation the head remains conscious for 90 seconds; at a heightened state of emotion, humans speak at a rate of 160 words per minute. Thus, Pulitzer Prize winner Robert Olen Butler gives us exactly 240 words for each of his heads. They are as varied as Medusa, Anne Boleyn, John the Baptist, the dragon slain by St.
BOOKS
January 23, 2000 | JONATHAN LEVI
The good news for all you folks who read about Edna Bradshaw of Bovary, Ala., in Robert Olen Butler's "Tabloid Dreams" is that she's back. The 1996 short story "Help Me Find My Spaceman Lover" in that collection was Edna's first-person account of her third-kind encounter with a spaceman. Back then, Edna was a fortysomething hairdresser living in a trailer park with her yellow cat, Eddie. One night, on her way back to her car in the parking lot of the local 24-hour Wal-Mart, she meets a spaceman.
BOOKS
January 25, 1998 | SUSIE LINFIELD, Susie Linfield is the acting director of the Cultural Reporting and Criticism Program at New York University. She is a contributing writer to Book Review
"The Deep Green Sea" opens with Le Thi Tien, a 26-year-old Vietnamese girl, in bed with Benjamin Cole, a 48-year-old American vet. They are strangers, and they make love: the passionate, earth-moving, life-shattering kind. Tien has told Ben three things: that she is a virgin; that her mother, who was a prostitute, is dead; and that her father, whom she never met and who was an American GI, is also deceased. The first two statements are lies.
NEWS
December 4, 1996 | ALLAN M. JALON, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
For most of his work, Robert Olen Butler's literary instinct has taken him to Vietnam and its culture. He's drawn fiction from his days there as a military spy and translator. In 1993, he won a Pulitzer Prize for "A Good Scent From a Strange Mountain," lyrical but somber tales drawn from the lives of Vietnamese immigrants in America.
NEWS
January 20, 1994 | RICHARD EDER, TIMES BOOK CRITIC
They meet cute. Walking in Greenwich Village, Ira Holloway, the narrator of "They Whisper," encounters Fiona, a sunny young woman who rounds the corner, smiles at him and walks on. Immediately she's back to explain that the smile was not a come-on but provoked by a funny-looking old man she'd just passed. In a moment she reappears; this time to make sure he's not feeling hurt.
BOOKS
March 29, 1992
Clear-cut logging is but one of the planetary anachronisms that have placed the earth in ecological peril. "Refrain!" You are merely in the vanguard in adjusting to changes all must make and live with if we are to survive. DOUGLAS HAMMOND Long Beach
NEWS
January 19, 2000
This Sunday: John Reader on "African Ceremonies"; Sherman Alexie on Ian Frazier's "On the Rez"; Jonathan Levi on Robert Olen Butler's "Mr. Spaceman"; and Douglas Brinkley with an appreciation of Edward Abbey on the 25th anniversary of the publication of "The Monkey Wrench Gang."
Los Angeles Times Articles
|