What do Jewish Elvis impersonators, a kidnapped Santa Claus, confused parents, horrific holiday traffic, unbreakable toys and the ever-heroic Bicycle Boys have in common? They all provide fuel for the Yuletide fire in humorist Alex Bernstein’s “miserable” collection of short stories centered on Christmas, Hanukkah and the overall malaise that descends on those in winter climates.
Miserable Holiday Stories (20 Festive Failures That Are Worse Than Yours) is the yin to the Hallmark Channel’s yang, with hefty doses of seasonal satire presented in the form of 20 short stories you can read while the babka is baking or anytime you need a respite from manufactured holiday merriment.
• “Blue Christmas”
• “Coloring Books”
• “The Unbreakable Toy”
• “The Smoking Lounge”
• “Brownie Mix” (A Glimmer Train Very Short Fiction Award finalist)
• “The #$@!# Bicycle Boys Save Christmas, Again!” (Also released as a single on Amazon)
• And many more!
Sure, Christmas and Hanukkah are supposed to be full of laughter, generosity and quality time with friends and family. But everyone knows the truth: the holidays are stressful at best and downright depressing at worst. Miserable Holiday Stories offers tongue-in-cheek escapism in the form of quirky, thought-provoking tales, that just might prompt you to appreciate something about your own holiday experiences.
Alex Bernstein is the award-winning author of the Miserable series of books (Miserable Adventure Stories, Miserable Holiday Stories, Miserable Love Stories) and Plrknib. His work has appeared at McSweeney’s, NewPopLit, The Big Jewel, The American Bystander, Yankee Pot Roast, Swink, Litro, Back Hair Advocate, Corvus, BluePrintReview, Hobo Pancakes, Gi60, The Rumpus, The Legendary, MonkeyBicycle and PopImage, among numerous others.
He is a staff writer on the new Discovery Kids cartoon The Dog & Pony Show. An occasional stand-up comic, Bernstein performed extensively in his youth and frequently over the past several years. His book Plrknib is a memoir about being the youngest comedian in Cincinnati in 1980.