The story of a book critic and his final thoughts from short-story master Tobias Wolff
Anders is an angry, cynical man. A book critic known for his
scathing reviews, he finds any excuse to dismiss, belittle, or insult. This
afternoon is no more agitating than the next. Angers finds himself in a long
line at the bank, waiting to reach a teller. Even after two men—wearing masks
and carrying guns—take control of the building, Anders is unfazed. It’s this
behavior that lands him with a pistol against his stomach and a man screaming
in his face. And when the bank robber, indignant over Anders’ behavior, shoots
the book critic in the head, his mind floats through the memories of his life,
settling on one particular event.
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