Book Review: The Relive Box by T. C. Boyle

I’m not a short story fan, but I am a T. C. Boyle fan, so I did try his new collection of short stories. Bottom line: they are great!

With 270 pages and just 11 stories, these are not the shortest of short stories, and most of them are very original and engaging. What to think of the title story, in which a family is addicted to their “Relive Box,” a game console with which they can watch any moment of their past? The father throws off his daughter (“Time for bed!”) and then spends the whole night finding back events from his past, never satisfied with the way he acted at the time, but with no way to change the past, either.

Several of the stories—like Relive Box—are placed in the near future, for instance involving a water apocalypse or genetically selected children and pets. Others are set in the current time, with a girl who failed college trying to cover up this fact for her parents at graduation, or a friendly widower who receives a letter from a stranger asking for his help.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading these stories. They are typically T. C. Boyle: full of quirks and great writing.

I received a e-copy of this book in return for a review.

About Judith
I'm owner and editor at and We edit books and articles for independent writers.

2 Responses to Book Review: The Relive Box by T. C. Boyle

  1. Roof Beam Reader says:

    Glad to hear you enjoyed this. I’ve only read one T.C. Boyle (The Tortilla Curtain); I liked it, but wasn’t left feeling much urge to read another… then I heard about Wild Child, which sounded fantastic. I haven’t had a chance to read that yet, but I guess I should get on it. 🙂

  2. BookerTalk says:

    The Relive Box does sound very different

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