Other Minds and Other Stories (Paperback)
* An ABA "December 2023 Indie Next List" pick.
From the award-winning author of A Questionable Shape and White Dialogues, a brilliant, anxious, and hilarious new collection.
A man lends his phone to a stranger in the mall, setting off an uncanny series of Unknown calls that come to haunt his relationship with jealousy and dread. A well-meaning locavore tries to butcher his backyard chickens humanely, only to find himself absorbed into the absurd violence of the pecking order. A student applying for a philosophy fellowship struggles to project himself into the thoughts of his hypothetical judges, becoming increasingly possessed and overpowered by the problem of other minds. And in "The Postcard," a private detective is hired to investigate a posthumous message that a widower has seemingly received from his dead wife, leading him into a foggy landscape of lost memories, shifting identities, and strange doublings.
Cerebral and eerie, captivating and profound, these twelve stories expertly guide us through the paranoia and obsession of everyday horrors, not least the horrors of overthinking what other people might be thinking. With all of Sims's trademark virtuosity, innovation, and wit, Other Minds and Other Stories continues to expand the possibilities of contemporary fiction.
For Electric Literature, Other Minds and Other Stories author Bennett Sims recommends "10 Books About Nonhuman Consciousness"
Read an excerpt:
BOMB Magazine hosts an excerpt of the short story "Medusa" from Bennett Sims' Other Minds and Other Stories: "MEDUSA" by BENNETT SIMS
Literary Hub hosts an excerpt of the short story "Other Minds" from Bennett Sims' Other Minds and Other Stories: "OTHER MINDS" by BENNETT SIMS
Menagerie Magazine hosts an excerpt of the short story "The New Violence" from Bennett Sims' Other Minds and Other Stories: "THE NEW VIOLENCE" by BENNETT SIMS
Ploughshares hosts an excerpt of the short story "Pecking Order" from Bennett Sims' Other Minds and Other Stories: "PECKING ORDER" by BENNETT SIMS
About the Author
Bennett Sims was born and raised in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He is the author of the story collection Other Minds and Other Stories (2023), the novel A Questionable Shape (2013), which received the Bard Fiction Prize and was a finalist for The Believer Book Award, and the story collection White Dialogues (2017), winner of the Rome Prize for Literature 2018-19 and named a best book of 2017 by Bookforum. He is a recipient of a Michener-Copernicus Society Fellowship. His fiction has appeared in A Public Space, Conjunctions, Electric Literature, Tin House, and Zoetrope: All-Story, as well as in the Pushcart Prize Anthology. He has taught at Bard College, Grinnell College, and the Iowa Writers' Workshop.