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The Ones Who Don't Say They Love You

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The Ones Who Don't Say They Love You by Maurice Carlos Ruffin
Hardcover $26.00
Aug 17, 2021 | ISBN 9780593133408

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Praise

“Ruffin isn’t so much interested in New Orleans as he is in his fellow New Orleanians, which is to say his fellow humans—their frailties, struggles, futures, and heart strains. . . . This is fresh fiction, buzzing with the voltage of the Now. . . . It’s prose that leaves scorch marks.”Garden & Gun

“Sometimes a story—or any short piece of writing—can get by on the strength of a single scrap of language, be it an unusual description or surprising line of dialogue. In the title short story of Maurice Carlos Ruffin’s debut collection, such a moment comes just after a john approaches a young sex worker on the street and wonders aloud why he’s the only one there. ‘I’m the onliest one you need,’ he hauntingly responds. In The Ones Who Don’t Say They Love You—which follows Ruffin’s novel We Cast A Shadow, a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner and the PEN/Open Book Awards—the writer traces the lives of a cast of characters living on the margins in his hometown of New Orleans.”AV Club

“Ruffin turns his penetrating gaze on his hometown, the Big Easy, in a collection Publishers Weekly calls ‘a rich tour of hardscrabble New Orleans.’”—The Millions

“[There are] musical structures embedded in these intimate, often playful stories. The pieces function as movements on a theme, each touching different notes and neighborhoods. A sense of controlled improvisation allows him to lay claim to his city. . . . It makes his book achingly truthful and incredibly accessible.”—Los Angeles Times

“The Ones Who Don’t Say They Love You is an ode to all that makes us human. Each story grabs your heart, squeezes the hell out of it, and then, somehow, makes it fuller. I couldn’t stop feeling. Ruffin is a writer whose work will make you a better person without your knowing it.”—Mateo Askaripour, author of Black Buck

“One of our great writers of place, Ruffin dazzles with this sonorous collection of deeply moving New Orleanian tales. Told with humor, insight, and radical empathy, these stories will linger in your heart and mind like the fading song of a brass band, vibrant and beautiful.”—Kali Fajardo-Anstine, author of Sabrina & Corina

“Some are funny, some poetic, others near heartbreaking, but the true hallmark Ruffin’s stories is an interest in what language can do. This is the work of a playful and exuberant writer who is always a joy to read.”—Rumaan Alam, author of National Book Award finalist Leave the World Behind

“Ruffin, more than any of the greats I read, searches for that idea, that style, that genre we think is impossible to do well, and he makes it look easy. What he is doing in these short stories is breathtaking. They are so singular and so reliant on each other for wholeness.”—Kiese Laymon, author of Heavy

“Ruffin takes readers on a rich tour of hardscrabble New Orleans in his bracing latest. . . . Fans of the author’s exceptional debut will want to take a look.”Publishers Weekly

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