‘Sex Scenes From A Chain Book Store’ by Aryn Kyle

Sex Scenes From A Chain Book Store by Aryn Kyle, 2010

The magic trick:

Showing the way cause-and-effect chains are often indirect

Well, the title gets your attention, right?

As someone who worked three summers at a big box store, I will say this story exaggerates the experience quite a bit. But not as much as you might guess.

Which is scary.

I appreciated the way the story – very realistically, I think – captures the disconnected way cause and effect tends to happen. It’s not that the plot is disconnected. The ending is absolutely related to the beginning and the middle. But the emotions that lead to this end are messy. They dictate moods or maybe establish atmospheres for potential events, rather than creating direct chains of events.

And that’s quite a trick on Kyle’s part.

The selection:

A woman comes around the corner and holds up her hands when she sees Mara and me. “Thank God,” she says. “Why are you workers so hard to find? I’ve been looking everywhere.” She is tight, thin-lipped. All chin and nose and narrow eyes.

“Can we help you?” Mara peels off her rubber gloves.

“Yes.” She hands me a book. “Is this good?”

“I haven’t read it,” I tell her and try to hand it back.


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