POSTCARDS FROM A DEAD GIRL

Kirk Farber

Sid is going crazy . . .

A telemarketer at a travel agency, Sid is becoming unhinged and superneurotic. Lately he’s been obsessed with car washes and mud baths. His hypochondria is driving his doctor sister mad. And it’s all because of his ex-girlfriend, Zoe, who’s sending him postcards from her European adventure, one that they were supposed to take together. It’s all quite upsetting.

A fact-finding tour of local post offices—and a new friendship with postman Gerald—followed by a solo European jaunt will do little to ease his anxiety. A long talk with his mother’s spirit in a wine bottle doesn’t help either.

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Sid is going crazy . . .

A telemarketer at a travel agency, Sid is becoming unhinged and superneurotic. Lately he’s been obsessed with car washes and mud baths. His hypochondria is driving his doctor sister mad. And it’s all because of his ex-girlfriend, Zoe, who’s sending him postcards from her European adventure, one that they were supposed to take together. It’s all quite upsetting.

A fact-finding tour of local post offices—and a new friendship with postman Gerald—followed by a solo European jaunt will do little to ease his anxiety. A long talk with his mother’s spirit in a wine bottle doesn’t help either. But what he really needs are a few more tentative dates with the chatty Candyce. Sid needs to get over Zoe and find love again—even though Zoe, apparently, has no inclination to be gotten over.

Wonderfully poignant, funny, odd, and more than a bit macabre, Postcards from a Dead Girl marks the emergence of a truly gifted and original literary voice.

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  • Harper Perennial
  • Paperback
  • February 2010
  • 272 Pages
  • 9780061834479

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$13.99

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About Kirk Farber

Kirk Farber lives with his family in Colorado, where he writes and works at a library with a lovely mountain view.

Praise

“Kirk Farber has a style very similar to Chuck Palahniuk, with offbeat observations, a view of our world through a slightly distorted lens, and a tone that’s … hilarious and tragic at the same time.”
Garth Stein, author of The Art of Racing in the Rain

“Dark. Funny. Bizarre. Mysterious. Fantastic. Kirk Farber’s Postcards from a Dead Girl is a polished gem. Farber’s uniquely quirky protagonist reflects our own personal obsessions, pinning us in limbo while simultaneously prodding us towards adventure.”
Josh Kilmer-Purcell, author of I Am Not Myself These Days

“A witty, tormented hero surrounded by fascinating, compassionate supporting characters makes this slender debut a surprisingly compulsive read.”—Kirkus Reviews

Sid Higgins, the appealing, self-deprecating narrator of Farber’s poignant, funny debut, has been receiving postcards from his old girlfriend Zoe. Unfortunately, the whimsical Zoe has disappeared, and the postmarks on the cards are more than a year old.. Sid’s older sister, Natalie, a doctor who provides welcome perspective on Sid, is by turns affectionate, irritated, and supportive.”
Publishers Weekly

Discussion Questions

How does the first person narrator impact your ability to understand Sid’s experiences? 

Sid lives alone in the house where he grew up, but now his parents are deceased and his sister is married and living elsewhere. How does this affect him emotionally? How would you characterize Sid’s feelings towards his sister, Natalie?  

Sid’s memories of his relationship with Zoe change throughout the story. How do they differ from beginning to end?  

Sid has three romantic relationships in the novel. How do Zoe, Candyce, and Melanie affect him differently? How does he treat them?  

The characters surrounding Sid seem to live their lives effortlessly while Sid is always struggling. Which characters in particular show this contrast? 

Sid has frequent trouble with communication. He misunderstands his boss and his doctor, is confused by foreign languages on his trip to Europe, and cell phones won’t stay connected. Does he ever manage to communicate clearly with anyone? How much of this is his own doing?  

Given the loss of both his parents, Sid seems fixated on death. What imagery appears throughout the story to reflect this? 

Sunshine and light are also frequent images. How does the sun affect Sid in places like New Jersey, Barcelona, and Highway 20? 

Sid has a powerful experience on Highway 20. How does this change him?  

From where do you think the postcards originated? Why do you think Sid resolves the postcard situation the way he does?  

What does the final scene of the novel suggest about Sid’s future?