Book Description: Lydia Davis has been called â€śone of the quiet giants in the world of American fictionâ€ť (Los Angeles Times), â€śan American virtuoso of the short story formâ€ť (Salon), an innovator who attempts â€śto remake the model of the modern short storyâ€ť (The New York Times Book Review). Her admirers include Grace Paley, Jonathan Franzen, and Zadie Smith; as Time magazine observed, her stories are â€śmoving . . . and somehow inevitable, as if she has written what we were all on the verge of thinking.â€ťIn Varieties of Disturbance, her fourth collection, Davis extends her reach as never before in stories that take every form from sociological studies to concise poems. Her subjects include the five senses, fourth-graders, good taste, and tropical storms. She offers a reinterpretation of insomnia and re-creates the ordeals of Kafka in the kitchen. She questions the lengths to which one should go to save the life of a caterpillar, proposes a clear account of the sexual act, rides the bus, probes the limits of marital fidelity, and unlocks the secret to a long and happy life.No two of these fictions are alike. And yet in each, Davis rearranges our view of the world by looking beyond our preconceptions to a bizarre truth, a source of delight and surprise.Â Varieties of Disturbance is a 2007 National Book Award Finalist for Fiction.