No One Belongs Here More Than You

No One Belongs Here More Than You

by Miranda July

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780743299411
Publisher: Scribner
Publication date: 05/06/2008
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 141,495
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Miranda July is a filmmaker, artist, and writer. Her most recent book is The First Bad Man, a novel. July’s collection of stories, No One Belongs Here More Than You, won the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award and has been published in twenty-three countries. Her writing has appeared in The Paris Review, Harper’s, and The New Yorker; It Chooses You was her first book of nonfiction. She wrote, directed and starred in The Future and Me and You and Everyone We Know—winner of the Camera d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival and a Special Jury Prize at Sundance. July’s participatory art works include the website Learning to Love You More (with artist Harrell Fletcher), Eleven Heavy Things (a sculpture garden created for the Venice Biennale), New Society (a performance), and Somebody (a messaging app created with Miu Miu.) She is currently working on a new feature film. Raised in Berkeley, California, July lives in Los Angeles.

Read an Excerpt

This Person

Someone is getting excited. Somebody somewhere is shaking with excitement because something tremendous is about to happen to this person. This person has dressed for the occasion. This person has hoped and dreamed and now it is really happening and this person can hardly believe it. But believing is not an issue here, the time for faith and fantasy is over, it is really really happening. It involves stepping forward and bowing. Possibly there is some kneeling, such as when one is knighted. One is almost never knighted. But this person may kneel and receive a tap on each shoulder with a sword. Or, more likely, this person will be in a car or a store or under a vinyl canopy when it happens. Or online or on the phone. It could be an e-mail re: your knighthood. Or a long, laughing, rambling phone message in which every person this person has ever known is talking on a speakerphone and they are all saying,You have passed the test, it was all just a test, we were only kidding, real life is so much better than that. This person is laughing out loud with relief and playing the message back to get the address of the place where every person this person has ever known is waiting to hug this person and bring her into the fold of life. It is really exciting, and it's not just a dream, it's real.

They are all waiting by a picnic table in a park this person has driven past many times before. There they are, it's everyone. There are balloons taped to the benches, and the girl this person used to stand next to at the bus stop is waving a streamer. Everyone is smiling. For a moment this person is almost creeped out by the scene, but it would be so like this person to become depressed on the happiest day ever, and so this person bucks up and joins the crowd.

Teachers of subjects that this person wasn't even good at are kissing this person and renouncing the very subjects they taught. Math teachers are saying that math was just a funny way of saying "I love you." But now they are simply saying it, I love you, and the chemistry and PE teachers are also saying it and this person can tell they really mean it. It's totally amazing. Certain jerks and idiots and assholes appear from time to time, and it is as if they have had plastic surgery, their faces are disfigured with love. The handsome assholes are plain and kind, and the ugly jerks are sweet, and they are folding this person's sweater and putting it somewhere where it won't get dirty. Best of all, every person this person has ever loved is there. Even the ones who got away. They hold this person's hand and tell this person how hard it was to pretend to get mad and drive off and never come back. This person almost can't believe it, it seemed so real, this person's heart was broken and has healed and now this person hardly knows what to think. This person is almost mad. But everyone soothes this person. Everyone explains that it was absolutely necessary to know how strong this person was. Oh, look, there's the doctor who prescribed the medicine that made this person temporarily blind. And the man who paid this person two thousand dollars to have sex with him three times when this person was very broke. Both of these men are in attendance, they seem to know each other. They both have little medals that they are pinning on this person; they are badges of great honor and strength. The badges sparkle in the sunlight, and everyone cheers.

This person suddenly feels the need to check her post office box. It is an old habit, and even if everything is going to be terrific from now on, this person still wants mail. This person says she will be right back and everyone this person has ever known says, Fine, take your time. This person gets in her car and drives to the post office and opens the box and there is nothing. Even though it is a Tuesday, which is famously a good day for mail. This person is so disappointed, this person gets back in the car and, having completely forgotten about the picnic, drives home and checks the voice mail and there are no new messages, just the old one about "passing the test" and "life being better." There are no e-mails, either, probably because everyone is at the picnic. This person can't seem to go back to the picnic. This person realizes that staying home means blowing off everyone this person has ever known. But the desire to stay in is very strong. This person wants to run a bath and then read in bed.

In the bathtub this person pushes the bubbles around and listens to the sound of millions of them popping at once. It almost makes one smooth sound instead of many tiny sounds. This person's breasts barely jut out of the water. This person pushes the bubbles onto the breasts and makes weird shapes with the foam. By now everyone must have realized that this person is not coming back to the picnic. Everyone was wrong; this person is not who they thought this person was. This person plunges underwater and moves her hair around like a sea anemone. This person can stay underwater for an impressively long time but only in a bathtub. This person wonders if there will ever be an Olympic contest for holding your breath under bathwater. If there were such a contest, this person would surely win it. An Olympic medal might redeem this person in the eyes of everyone this person has ever known. But no such contest exists, so there will be no redeeming. This person mourns the fact that she has ruined her one chance to be loved by everyone; as this person climbs into bed, the weight of this tragedy seems to bear down upon this person's chest. And it is a comforting weight, almost human in heft. This person sighs. This person's eyes begin to close, this person sleeps.

Copyright © 2007 by Miranda July

Table of Contents

Contents

The Shared Patio

The Swim Team

Majesty

The Man on the Stairs

The Sister

This Person

It Was Romance

Something That Needs Nothing

I Kiss a Door

The Boy from Lam Kien

Making Love in 2003

Ten True Things

The Moves

Mon Plaisir

Birthmark How to Tell Stories to Children

Reading Group Guide

No One Belongs Here More Than You
Reading Group Guide

Discussion Questions:
1. Many of the characters in Miranda July's stories are lonely, vulnerable and tentative, yet clearly the intent of the author is not to expose or ridicule them but to make them sympathetic to the reader. Are there characters in these stories who unexpectedly win your heart? Are there some whose behavior you cannot understand?
2. In The Shared Patio, the narrator explains that telling Vincent Chang "it's not your fault" was "really the only thing I had ever wanted to say to anyone, and be told" (pg. 7). What does she mean by this?
3. In The Swim Team, "Maria" tells Kelda that resisting putting her face into the bowl of water is "the body telling you it doesn't want to die" (pg. 16). What is it that divides the three elderly people in this story to sign up for swimming lessons?
4. The narrator in Majesty educates people on earthquake safety, engaging her own fears. And she dreams of Prince William? Yet she says "Life is just this way, broken, and I am crazy to hope for something else" (pg. 31), why does she have this dream? Is there a strange optimism in Miranda July's stories?
5. What does The Man on the Stairs represent? Why does the narrator think about the friends she dislikes and the boy at the gas station when she first hears him coming towards her room? Instead of waking Kevin or calling for help, why does she get out of bed and face him by herself?
6. "We do terrible things, we make wars, we kill out of greed. So who are we to say how to love" (pg. 43). Does the narrator in The Sister truly believe his argument for preferring teenage girls, or is this a rationalization that allows him to continue his behavior? When does he first realize Blanca doesn't actually exist? And why does he acquiesce to Victor?
7. What is the "dark shape" in Making Love in 2003? As an adult, why does the narrator believe this darkness has been transformed into her student, Stephen Krause? After discovering he has another girlfriend, why does she write "Peace" on the chalkboard?
8. In Mon Plaisir, what is the significance of Carl and the narrator practicing Buddhism, tai chi, macrobiotic diets, and favoring only things that are "MEANINGFUL" (pg. 148)?
9. In Birthmark, why does the narrator regret her decision to remove her "stain?" What did this mark represent to both her and others? When it reappears, why does her husband believe she'll finally want to have a child with him?
10. When and why does the relationship change between Deb and Lyon in How to Tell Stories to Children? Do you consider their family relationship in the best interest of the three adults, or the child? If her eyes are "triumphant" (pg. 201) when she brings Ed Borger home, what is Lyon trying to win?
11. In Something That Needs Nothing, "Gwen" noticed "We were always getting away with something, which implied that someone was always watching us, which meant we were not alone in this world" (pg. 75). Several of the characters in other stories also mention the idea of someone looking over them. Is this a way of assuring loneliness?
12. Are there any overarching themes that link these stories together? Did you find connections between the characters — do they occupy similar worlds?
13. Discuss the sense of loneliness in this collection. Which characters feel isolated from the rest of society? Is this their choice? Do any of them change?

Enhancing Your Book Club Tips:
1. Not only is Miranda July an award-winning author, she's also an accomplished filmmaker and performer. Before discussing No One Belongs Here More Than You, watch her movie Me and You and Everyone We Know.
2. To find out more information about Miranda July's projects, visit her website at: www.mirandajuly.com.
3. Miranda and artists Harold Fletcher created a participatory website: http://learningtoloveyoumore.com/ Visit it and share what you thought with your bookclub!

Introduction

No One Belongs Here More Than You

Reading Group Guide

Discussion Questions:

1. Many of the characters in Miranda July's stories are lonely, vulnerable and tentative, yet clearly the intent of the author is not to expose or ridicule them but to make them sympathetic to the reader. Are there characters in these stories who unexpectedly win your heart? Are there some whose behavior you cannot understand?

2. In The Shared Patio, the narrator explains that telling Vincent Chang "it's not your fault" was "really the only thing I had ever wanted to say to anyone, and be told" (pg. 7). What does she mean by this?

3. In The Swim Team, "Maria" tells Kelda that resisting putting her face into the bowl of water is "the body telling you it doesn't want to die" (pg. 16). What is it that divides the three elderly people in this story to sign up for swimming lessons?

4. The narrator in Majesty educates people on earthquake safety, engaging her own fears. And she dreams of Prince William? Yet she says "Life is just this way, broken, and I am crazy to hope for something else" (pg. 31), why does she have this dream? Is there a strange optimism in Miranda July's stories?

5. What does The Man on the Stairs represent? Why does the narrator think about the friends she dislikes and the boy at the gas station when she first hears him coming towards her room? Instead of waking Kevin or calling for help, why does she get out of bed and face him by herself?

6. "We do terrible things, we make wars, we kill out of greed. So who are we to say how to love" (pg. 43). Does the narrator in The Sister truly believe his argument for preferringteenage girls, or is this a rationalization that allows him to continue his behavior? When does he first realize Blanca doesn't actually exist? And why does he acquiesce to Victor?

7. What is the "dark shape" in Making Love in 2003? As an adult, why does the narrator believe this darkness has been transformed into her student, Stephen Krause? After discovering he has another girlfriend, why does she write "Peace" on the chalkboard?

8. In Mon Plaisir, what is the significance of Carl and the narrator practicing Buddhism, tai chi, macrobiotic diets, and favoring only things that are "MEANINGFUL" (pg. 148)?

9. In Birthmark, why does the narrator regret her decision to remove her "stain?" What did this mark represent to both her and others? When it reappears, why does her husband believe she'll finally want to have a child with him?

10. When and why does the relationship change between Deb and Lyon in How to Tell Stories to Children? Do you consider their family relationship in the best interest of the three adults, or the child? If her eyes are "triumphant" (pg. 201) when she brings Ed Borger home, what is Lyon trying to win?

11. In Something That Needs Nothing, "Gwen" noticed "We were always getting away with something, which implied that someone was always watching us, which meant we were not alone in this world" (pg. 75). Several of the characters in other stories also mention the idea of someone looking over them. Is this a way of assuring loneliness?

12. Are there any overarching themes that link these stories together? Did you find connections between the characters — do they occupy similar worlds?

13. Discuss the sense of loneliness in this collection. Which characters feel isolated from the rest of society? Is this their choice? Do any of them change?

Enhancing Your Book Club Tips:

1. Not only is Miranda July an award-winning author, she's also an accomplished filmmaker and performer. Before discussing No One Belongs Here More Than You, watch her movie Me and You and Everyone We Know.

2. To find out more information about Miranda July's projects, visit her website at: www.mirandajuly.com.

3. Miranda and artists Harold Fletcher created a participatory website: http://learningtoloveyoumore.com/ Visit it and share what you thought with your bookclub!

Customer Reviews

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No One Belongs Here More Than You 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 70 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've found that people either adore Miranda July or loathe her. I am, personally, in the former. These stories were a nice break from all of the seemingly heavy things I've been reading lately- not that they were not meaningful, because, oh, they were. They were not full of superfluous language and clichés. They were like how it would be if someone told you about something that had happened to them or possibly, how you may think/narrate/feel inside your head. I found the book exceptional!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was browsing reviews for this book and I became irritated with people who did not understand July's writing. She is not writing, 'The sky is blue...' She goes above and beyond imagination. For those who like quirky, this book is it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a work of genius, a trans-genre satirization of modern life captured by way of a secular medium in the holest of ways. In keeping with avant-garde genius, this work should be trivialized, rejected and missed by the mass-minded. July, in both contemporary and historic terms, has done justice to literature in the 21st Century I truly cannot think of literary statements more articulate on the periodic condition in the last 100 years save for Henry Miller, Albert Camus, J.D. Salinger, Ira Levin, Brett Easton Ellis,and Chuck Palahniuk. Though in short-story format, her work must be considered equal to those formerly mentioned. Furthermore, I don't think a single pair of literate eyes could disagree.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Miranda July is the most wonderful writer of our generation. Her stories are so full of emotion and truth that they make your heart ache. This book is one of the most achingly poignant books I have ever read. Do yourself a favor and buy this book now!
Guest More than 1 year ago
As in her other work, July seeks to find connectedness between individuals, between the idividual and nature, and to her audience. She pretends to be a naive dreamer, but she is an observant witness to both human cruelty and naivete. Her stories have little to do with realism or with characters or with 'storytelling.' They are essays told in the form of narrative jokes, and comic timing is one of their primary strengths. I haven't been so captivated by the short story form since I discovered Kafka and O'Connor. July uses it to her ends, and has created, I think, a new kind of fiction in the process. I call it 'cosmic' because it views reality, desire, and being as an interconnected whole.
roblong on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Like all collections some of these stories affected me more deeply than others, but there isn't a dud amongst them and some - "Birthmark", "I Kiss a Door" and "The Man on the Stairs", are excellent.
MikeFarquhar on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Miranda July is the writer/director of Me, You and Everyone We Know and as you'd perhaps expect her stories are slightly odd, slightly askew from the world and they try to reinvigorate the sense of wonder in what is seen as ordinary. There's some great ideas here, though the wistful tone sometimes comes over just a little bit too archly.
brakketh on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Very enjoyable short stories though they were tragic and wonderful in equal mixture. I enjoyed this more than her movie.
bibliobibuli on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Miranda July's funny, sad, startling collection of short stories won the Frank O'Connor in 2007. It comes with different coloured covers so that you can coordinate your copy with your clothes. I bought mine via Abebooks and got a bright green copy which clashed a bit with my wardrobe. Often bordering on the bizarre, these 16 stories of lonely misfits, injured by life, aching for love and acceptance would really hurt to read, but the characters are survivors, buffered by their rich fantasy lives.The protagonist of Shared Patio longs to write for a magazine advice column and the story is sprinkled with offbeat advice. She builds fantasies around her neighbour which she gets close to fulfilling when he has an epileptic fit on the shared patio one day.In Swim Team a woman coaches a swimming team comprising old people in her apartment and without the aid of water (although she does provide them with bowls when they need to practice breathing exercises!)A woman dreams of an erotic encounter with Prince William in Majesty and awake plots how she might meet him.In The Sister A lonely man is set up on a date with a colleague's sister who never turns up, and turns out never to have existed. Perhaps it doesn't matter in the end.It's hard to pick a favourite, but Something That Needs Nothing is a love story that broke my heart. This Person is about how we will always go on sabotaging ourselves is as perfect a short short story as they come, and you can read the whole thing here.I wonder it everyone reading the book will find themselves reflected in this book. Do you feel as lonely, as out of sync with the world, as uncertain as July's characters?It's frightening to admit, but I do sometimes. I really do! And if you say yes too, I think I will look at you oddly (as of course you will have to look at me). Maybe this is the great unsayable - we aren't as together as we'd like the world to think we are.But when you look at Miranda July, who successful, young and beautiful, everything her characters are not, you wonder how the hell she channels these voices!I feel like turning the book over and beginning it all over again. This is a collection that is staying on my writing desk to stir up my slothful own muse.
shawnr on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Most of the stories in this collection feel a lot like her film project, Me and You and Everyone We Know. She is a literary ¿cute brute¿ who sometimes manages to create clever scenes that inject a slightly humorous innocence into otherwise dire circumstances. However, at other times it feels immature and gratuitous. Sometimes her unrelenting authorial smile should crumble.
pingdjip on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Reading these stories is like listening to someone while constantly looking her in the face to see if she is serious. Is she pulling my leg? She looks normal. Like it¿s totally no big deal to tell me about a father who explains his grown-up daughter how to make women come. And it doesn¿t matter either that this grown-up daughter ponders whether the woman she will maybe do it to, in the future, will actually like it. Her dad will not be there to help her. Besides, `I suppose she would be a lesbian and not want him to touch her.¿ Well, obviously. Naturally. Oh, I know that she knows that I know this is quirky and odd and weird, that¿s why she keeps the straight face. She¿s so good at exaggerating how normal she thinks this is. And actually she doesn¿t antagonize me: it¿s adorable, this matter-of-fact-face and these outrageous stories. And in a way she¿s right. Beneath the odd, the weird and the quirky, these stories are actually `just¿ about relationships. Sudden fits of intimacy, awkward silences, gradual withdrawals, secret wishes and unexpected brain waves that save the day.It has been said that all her characters are losers, but this is not true. Some are great friend makers. Up to the point that they get a little impatient with the `recoiling¿ type: `Some people need a red carpet rolled out in front of them in order to walk into a friendship.¿ Anyway, you should read these stories. They¿re really very good.
jbushnell on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Miranda July's great strength is her ability to maintain child-like innocence even while discussing some of the most horrific emotional violence that people can visit onto one another. If that sounds like something you'll like, then this book is for you!
dwfree on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Nice collection of stories. There were only 2 I didn't really get into. Probably not for everyone, but I dig her work.
jsheas on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Remarkably interesting author with a dynamic voice, she presents to the reader a theme of inherent loneliness and the actions that stem from such a nature. It is definitely a text that most can appreciate, although it can be awkward and somewhat absurd at points (intentionally).
plenilune on LibraryThing 7 months ago
At its best, July's writing is beautiful, with finely wrought characters and excruciatingly honest details. At its worst, the characters begin to sound like one another, and that one person is someone you wouldn't want sitting next to you on the subway or local bus. The stronger stories ("Something That Needs Nothing," "The Man on the Stairs," "Birthmark" and "How to Tell Stories to Children" among others) are brilliantly heartbreaking, and far outweigh the weaker ones. Overall, this collection is probably best read one story at a time, but the stories themselves make this hard to do-- they are fast-paced and leave you wanting more.
pecochran on LibraryThing 7 months ago
There were some laugh out loud moments, but I mostly didn't like it. I thought a lot of the sex was unnecessary and didn't serve the stories very well. And I think three of the stories used the same device where someone would wait in an exact location until the person that spurned them returned. It was strange.
jiles2 on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Miranda July reminds me of the rapper who does the best guest spots on other people's albums, but a whole album just gets a bit repetitive. I began the collection thoroughly laughing. But the more I read, the more I felt I was laughing at, rather than with the characters which led to my feeling uncomfortable about the whole situation. Maybe that's the point. Either way - -she's got talent, it just gets a bit overbearing.
Jules325 on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Difficult to get through but for depressing content reasons only. I finally picked it back up 6 months after starting and read the rest. It left me feeling like I was 15 again, lost, confused, and demoralized by my own shortcomings. The common thread for me was that her characters are terribly naive and striving for something out of reach, that will forever remain out of reach. They are simply not capable of attaining that which they desire and are desperate,lonely, and delusional because of it. If you've never know what that feels like first hand, this collection may offer a glimpse.Beautiful prose, unique perspective, but depressing!
cinesnail88 on LibraryThing 7 months ago
I really loved this collection of short stories. Favorites included "The Sister," "Something That Needs Nothing," "Making Love in 2003, and "How to Tell Stories to Children." Ultimately, I thought the whole book was very strong though. July has an interesting insight into the subtleties of human nature and behavior that made these stories impossible to put down.
juliannarobbins on LibraryThing 7 months ago
A delightfully odd collection of short stories!
vegetrendian on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Miranda July is fresh, interesting, and sometimes breathtakingly truthful. She is an artist of many media, and her latest foray is into short (often very short) fiction. I had seen and absolutely adored her film Me and You and Everyone We Know, and was excited to learn she had turned her hand to fiction. I bought the book not long after it was released, but my partner read it first. Having shared my love of the movie, and my enthusiasm at the prospect of the book, I was surprised to hear of her decidedly lukewarm feelings towards it by the time she was finished. This put me off slightly, and explains the months that lapsed between its release and my eventual reading; though I still came at the book expecting to like it. Actually that¿s not true. I came away from the book liking it. I came at the book expecting to love it. And there are parts that I do love. There are sentences, and thoughts in there that, in and of themselves, make it worth the purchase price. But all in all I found the voices too similar to be sustained across such varied situations. And I found the characters a bit too posed, a bit too damaged and cloying. We are consistently exposed to the inner thoughts of women (and one man) who are so hurt and needy and confused that it all got to be a bit much. I have no doubt that there are people like that out in the world, and it is quite likely that I am underestimating their numbers. But it feels like the whole world of this book is populated by characters who are only barely managing to live in such a big confusing world. They all felt like children in adult¿s clothing. Like twelve year olds living lives far too mature for them, finding themselves struck with awe, and fright, and confusion in every situation. But they, also like children, do tend to come up with some insightful, touching, and incredibly beautiful sentiments. Like this: ¿People just need a little help because they are so used to not loving. It¿s like scoring the clay to make another piece of clay stick to it.¿ Which at once manages to be simple, and poetic, and touching, and true. And this is by no means the only example. Almost every story has one of these little gems to make them all worth while. Like any collection of stories there are hits and misses. Some of the stories are excellent (Something That Needs Nothing was my personal favourite) and others fell flat or felt underdeveloped. This book let me down only being too much of what I was looking for. By the end I felt that the characters that she had created in her film and in some of the other stories were not so interesting anymore because it seems that everyone is just like them. Instead of finding these people quirky and charming and unique, we are thrown into a world where everyone has the same idiosyncrasies and neuroses, and it just starts to feel a little less special.
miriamparker on LibraryThing 7 months ago
I like Miranda July's style a lot. And I finally read the story that Ashley has been telling me about for years "Making Love in 2003" which is good. Something about the detached-ness of the characters though makes me feel detached and kind of hate them. Which might be what is wrong with my first book. Like, if the character is angry and alone, you kind of are like, "Well, bully for you, why don't you try a little harder." That's kind of how I feel about Miranda July. Except that I think she is smart and is trying to do something complex with those detached, lonely characters. It's just really hard to do.
pharmakos555 on LibraryThing 7 months ago
shockingly odd, pathetically lonely characters making real or imagined--but usually unexpected and novel--connections with other people.
Heather_S on LibraryThing 7 months ago
A very satisfying collection of short stories. Quirky and silly, often quite touching.
jennemede on LibraryThing 7 months ago
I first learnt about Miranda online through Miss Snark¿s (now expired) blog where she¿d put a link to Miranda¿s ingenius website marketing her new book. And now that I¿ve read it, I am more in awe of the lady, for Miranda is a true genius as her stories are beautifully original, quirky and a learning experience in what new writing should be all about as a wannabe writer myself. I¿ve been stuck in a rut trying to write something the past few months, and the more I read, the less I seem to want to write because I feel dwarfed by the talent here in America. And yet, writers like Miranda inspire me to abandon all my inhibitions and insecurities and look within myself to want and go to a place where I can just throw away the shackles of adulthood and motherhood and perhaps even readerhood to unlock my inner muse. No One Belongs Here More Than You is a compilation of 16 stories that are really insights into seeming ordinary lives that have been turned inside out with Miranda¿s imagination and use of clever prose that makes you pause after each story and go, ¿Hmm¿what happened there?¿. I am not a deep person but I do love a good philosophical, metaphysical ¿why¿ and ¿what if¿ pondering from time to time, and that is what each Miranda story is like. That some of the stories are disturbing in content (a man is given ecstacy and coerced to having sex with his male friend even when he¿s not gay; a teacher having sex with her autistic student; a movie being made about an older man being in love with a child) is a factor that becomes less important as she delves into the imagined how of these scenarios, how easily these things happen, how commonly they take place, how loneliness does not discriminate, how even the most ordinary, traditional, `normal¿ personas can make drastic turns in life with even the smallest decisions - taking a drug, sending an email, a mere phone call. That most of what happens in life needs no grand gestures, no build-ups, no elaborate staging. That some things just happen because they happen in our minds, and the rest of the world is left to wonder, ¿Why didn¿t we see that coming?¿ because really, who do you know has the time or inclination to really look? My simplest reasons for liking Miranda is she¿s funny and imaginative. Sometimes it seems that she may be a little crazy but I think those are the best kind of writers, those who seem to have a controlled madness about them they can use to come up with truly original stuff you don¿t get to see very often. I await eagerly for more of Miranda¿s books and her films.