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Boys and Girls Like You and Me

Boys and Girls Like You and Me

Stories

  • reading group guide
ARYN KYLE, whose award-winning novel The God of Animals was hailed as "reason for readers to rejoice" (USA Today), turns her gift for storytelling to the lives of girls and women in this spectacular collection. These eleven stories showcase Kyle’s keen eye for character, her humor, and her uncanny grasp of the loneliness, selfishness, and longing that underlie female experience.

In "Nine," a young girl given to exaggeration escapes a humiliating ninth birthday celebration with the help of her father’s new girlfriend. The dubious benefits of sleeping with one’s boss are revealed when a bookstore manager defends an employee from an irate customer in the hilarious "Sex Scenes from a Chain Bookstore." A raid on a neighbor’s meth lab strengthens the unlikely friendship between a solitary woman and a Goth teenage girl in "Boys and Girls Like You and Me." And in a notable exception to the rule, "Captain’s Club" features a boy whose devotion to a lonely woman transforms his cruise vacation.

In moments electric with sudden harmony or ruthless indifference, the girls and women in this collection provoke, beguile, and entertain. Writing with remarkable tenderness and wisdom, Kyle gives us a collection radiant with bittersweet revelations and startling insights, and secures her reputation as a major young talent.
Choose a format:
  • Scribner | 
  • 240 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781416594819 | 
  • April 2011
List Price $14.00
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Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Boys and Girls Like You and Me includes an introduction, discussion questions, ideas for enhancing your book club, and a Q&A with author Aryn Kyle. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.

Introduction

In this collection of short stories, award-winning author Aryn Kyle relates the most truthful, heartbreaking details of what it is like to be female. Her characters range from a nine-year-old girl grappling with her mother’s abandonment in “Nine,” to an employee having an affair with her married manager in “Sex Scenes from a Chain Bookstore,” to a woman writing essays for college students in her decomposing apartment in the title story.

Boys and Girls Like You and Me features women who cheat and are cheated on, lie and are lied to, run toward love and away from it. They are confused, hopeful, lonely, eager, and unsure. They ignite powerful relationships with others only to watch them fall apart, falling apart themselves in the process.

Kyle navigates these stories with a commanding sense of honesty, ultimately leaving her readers with more questions than answers.

Discussion Questions

1. Discuss how love appears in its many forms (p see more

More Books from this Author

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About the Author

Aryn Kyle
Photo Credit: Miriam Berkley

Aryn Kyle

Aryn Kyle is the author of the bestselling novel The God of Animals and a graduate of the University of Montana writing program. Her short stories have appeared in Ploughshares, The Georgia Review, Alaska Quarterly ReviewBest New American Voices 2005, Best American Short Stories 2007, and The Atlantic Monthly, for which her story "Foaling Season" won a National Magazine Award. She is also the recipient of the American Library Association's Alex Award, the Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’Award, and others.  She lives in New York.

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