“Since the triumphant appearance of ‘A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius’ (2000), a book some people will never forgive for nearly living up to its title, Dave Eggers has been busy with philanthropy and entrepreneurship, adding a book imprint and a monthly magazine (The Believer) to his McSweeney’s empire, opening a tutoring center, 826 Valencia, in San Francisco, and a superhero supply store for children in Brooklyn. He has, along the way, consolidated his position as the magnetic center of a literary counterestablishment, a role that attracts predictable flak both from those who think he tries too hard to be cool and from those for whom he can never be cool enough. He has also published a novel, ‘You Shall Know Our Velocity’ (2002), and now a book of stories, ‘How We Are Hungry,’ the latter released with a characteristic disdain for the rituals of the publishing industry: no reviewers’ galleys, no back-cover blurbs, no publicity. It would be easy to suspect this new collection, with its dour brown endpapers and plain black cover (with an ingenious elastic bookmark sown in), of false modesty, or of the kind of attention-getting, passive-aggressive self-effacement that has been one of its author’s strategies for dealing with his fame, but it would also be unfair. The modesty is genuine, and appears to be quite deliberate.”
More here in the New York Times.