. . . in which Peter explores his earliest memory, his mother’s tumble from her lawn chair; probes the root causes of his childhood pelecypodophobia (fear of bivalve mollusks, particularly clams); navigates the upper reaches of the Bolotomy River; builds a radio receiver and explores the farthest reaches of the galaxy; ponders the differences between dour foxes and happy clams; falls in love with the girl with the white fur muff; learns the pleasures of skating on ice and taking the long way home; becomes a fan of the Larry Peters Adventure series; and rises to the rank of Aluminum Commodore in the Young Tars.
“It generates its own reality, and it’s profoundly funny.”
You can read the first half of Little Follies right here on the Web.
||Herb ’n’ Lorna:
A Love Story
. . . in which Peter investigates and reconstructs the life stories of his maternal grandparents, Herb and Lorna Piper, a cuddly couple who invented the animated erotic jewelry business.
“A classic. Savor it.”
You can read the first half of Herb ’n’ Lorna right here on the Web.
. . . in which Peter constructs a plausible adult life for his grade school chum Matthew Barber, now living in Boston, where he is vice-president of a toy company by day, but becomes Bertram W. Beath, restaurant reviewer, when the sun goes down.
You can read the first half of Reservations Recommended right here on the Web.
. . . in which Peter finally completes a junior-high-school science assignment, thirty years late, exploring along the way quantum physics, entropy, epistemology, principles of uncertainty and discontinuity, a range of life’s Big Questions, and his memories of his intoxicating science teacher, Miss Rheingold.
“Luminously intelligent fun.”
You can read the first third of Where Do You Stop? right here on the Web.
. . . in which Peter, working on the principle of the panopticon, constructs a plausible life for Ariane Lodkochnikov, the sultry older sister of his imaginary childhood friend, the sly maker of her own self and her own myth.
“Droll and delighting . . . conveys a sense of sheer play.”
. . . in which Peter receives his sexual initiation at the hands of the Glynn twins, becomes a sketch doctor, listens to many tales about the night the Nevsky mansion burned, learns the value of hope, and discovers the love of his life.
“A daring tour de force.”
You can read the first half of At Home with the Glynns right here on the Web.
. . . in which Peter turns fifty and marks the occasion by reading the latest installment of his memoirs, Dead Air, in fifty consecutive episodes, one episode a night for fifty nights, culminating on the night of his birthday, while his wife, Albertine, tries to squeeze a living from the old hotel they own and to stop it from crumbling slowly around them.
“One of the most delightful novels of the decade.”
You can read the first quarter of Leaving Small’s Hotel right here on the Web.
. . . in which Peter struggles to win the affections of the toothsome Patti Fiorenza while keeping both his mother’s hopes and his mother’s boat afloat.
“A hilarious riff on Don Quixote, on the desire for fame,
the need for success, the power of fantasy.”
You can read the first half of Inflating a Dog right here on the Web.
. . . in which Peter, summoned for jury duty, allows his mind to wander, and slips into the mind of Matthew Barber, who find himself in the cardiac catheter lab in a Boston hospital, where he allows his mind to wander, and slips into the mind of Bertram W. Beath, who checks into a hotel in Miami’s South Beach and into a life as an erotic opportunist and passionate spectator of beauty and human folly.
“At stake in Passionate Spectator . . . is nothing
less than an assessment of each person’s place in the universe.”
. . . in which Peter begins the Flying Trilogy, which will, when it is complete, set the record straight on the subject of the celebrated solo flight that he made in the summer of his fifteenth year from Babbington, New York, to Corosso, New Mexico; in this volume, he builds an aerocycle, Spirit of Babbington, a single-seat airplane based on drawings that he finds in an ancient issue of a magazine called Impractical Craftsman, makes his travel plans, and departs.
“At its deepest level, the book is a study in disconnects
— the gaps between aspiration and achievement, between image and reality,
and, most of all, between the seeming sanctuary of the past and the unsettling
nature of the present . . . a splendid start to this promising ‘Flying’
. . . in which Ariane Lodkochnikov, the sultry older sister of Peter’s imaginary childhood friend, collects the wisdom (and recipes) she learned in her mother’s kitchen as a girl while watching her make clam chowder but understood only later in life.
. . . in which Mark Dorset, unaffiliated historicopsychosociologist and longtime friend of Peter Leroy, pokes and probes his way through Peter’s memoirs and annotates them with his own assessments of their sources and ultimate meaning.
Copyright © 2004-2007 by Eric Kraft
The Personal History, Adventures, Experiences & Observations of Peter Leroy is a work of fiction. The characters, incidents, dialogues, settings, and businesses portrayed in it are products of the author’s imagination and are not to be construed as real. Any resemblance to actual events or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
All rights reserved. No part of this website may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the author.
The illustration at the top of the page is an adaptation of an illustration by Stewart Rouse that first appeared on the cover of the August 1931 issue of Modern Mechanics and Inventions. The boy at the controls of the aerocycle doesn’t particularly resemble Peter Leroy—except, perhaps, for the smile.
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