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Book Review: 'The Woman Who Cut Off Her Leg at the Maidstone Club and Other Stories'

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With turns that are weirdly perplexing and pointedly symbolic, Slavin’s stories are domestic dramas stippled with grotesqueries: A woman grows teeth all over her body then has an affair with her dentist; a mulish feuding couple steps around a bowl of spilled pudding on the kitchen floor for months; and a celebrity mom takes a lover who is literally falling apart (in the end, she notes, ”An eye floating in a glass of milk follows me around the kitchen”). These impish slices of suburban gothic, written by a former TV producer, are occasionally a bit formulaic. But more often they’re marvelously metaphorical, describing macabre situations of both alienation and redemption. A-