We think about it every day, sometimes every hour: Money. Who has it. Who doesn't. How you get it. How you don't. In Refund, Bender creates an award-winning collection of stories that deeply explore the ways in which money and the estimation of value affect the lives of her characters. The stories in Refund reflect our contemporary world-swindlers, reality show creators, desperate artists, siblings, parents - who try to answer the question: What is the real definition of worth? In "Theft," an eighty-year-old swindler, accustomed to tricking people for their money, boards a cruise ship to see if she can find something of true value-a human connection. In "Anything for Money," the creator of a reality show is thrown into the real world when his estranged granddaughter reenters his life in need of a new heart; and in the title story, young artist parents in downtown Manhattan escape the attack on 9/11 only to face a battle over their subletted apartment with a stranger who might have lost more than only her deposit. Set in contemporary America, these stories herald a work of singular literary merit by an important writer at the height of her power.
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by Karen E. Bender
by Karen E. Quinones Miller
by Karen White
by Karen Witemeyer
by Peg Kehret
by Kathy Hepinstall
"Four talented narrators bring to life 13 thirteen stories about money and how it permeates our lives. But these aren't just tales of financial woes. They delve deeply into themes of self-worth, regret, and the question of what adds up to a worthwhile life. Characters teeter on the edge of desperation and outright despair, and the voices of narrators Meredith Orlow, Carine Montbertrand, Eliza Foss, and Susan Bennett make their struggles feel heartbreakingly real. The narrators also capitalize on occasional moments of levity, saving the overall listening experience from being too morose. Montbertrand especially shines in "Theft," as 80-year-old former swindler Ginger Klein. Alone and terminally ill, Ginger embarks on an Alaskan cruise with plans of suicide--but makes a surprising connection with another passenger. A.T.N. © AudioFile 2017, Portland, Maine"
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