Monday, January 12, 2015

National Public Radio’s Fresh Air Endorses UNO Press Book

National Public Radio's Fresh Air Endorses UNO Press BookDeath by Pastrami, a collection of short stories by Leonard S. Bernstein, is the latest publication of the UNO Press. The slim book sold out its first edition within six weeks and is currently ranked among the top five "Best Short Stories in the U.S" on

The University of New Orleans Press begins 2015 celebrating glowing reviews of its latest publication.

National Public Radio’s Fresh Air released a glowing review on Dec. 31 of Death by Pastrami by Leonard S. Bernstein, a short fiction collection published by the UNO Press in November. The book presents a portrait of New York City over the last 50 years, spanning familiar sites from the garment district to the country clubs of Long Island.

“The 17 brief stories in Death by Pastrami possess the rough charm of an almost bygone New York that’s all about hustle and bustle, streetwise humor and bottom lines,” Fresh Air said. “These stories are both quaint and timeless, a fanciful addition to the literature of place...”

Since release of the review, Bernstein’s book has traveled to the top of bestseller lists’. Indeed, the book is currently listed among the top five books of short stories in the U.S. on And, following the boost on Fresh Air by critic Maureen Corrigan, the first edition of the slim collection of short stories has sold out within six weeks of publication.

Corrigan, a critic-in-residence and lecturer at Georgetown University, is an associate editor of and contributor to Mystery and Suspense Writers (Scribner) and the winner of the 1999 Edgar Award for Criticism, presented by the Mystery Writers of America. A writer and literary critic, Corrigan has chaired the Mystery and Suspense judges' panel of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, served as a juror for the 2012 Pulitzer Prize in Fiction and is a reviewer and columnist for The Washington Post's Book World.

"This Leonard Bernstein knows whereof he writes: He owned and managed a garment factory; now, in his 80s, he's published his first work of fiction, making him a veritable Grandma Moses of the garment district," Corrigan states. "Most of Bernstein's stories end with the literary equivalent of a shrug — a distinctive New York gesture...These stories are both quaint and timeless, a fanciful addition to the literature of place."

The success of Death by Pastrami is follows other recent successes at the publisher, including the release of Talk that Music Talk, and a transition to Johns Hopkins University as exclusive distributor of UNO Press titles.

University of New Orleans Center for the Book/UNO Press seeks work that contributes to the rich cultural tradition of New Orleans and the surrounding region, as well as work that contributes to the intellectual and aesthetic life of academic and general audiences everywhere, said Abram Himelstein, a University English instructor and editor-in-chief of the UNO Press.

“It’s a thrill to watch Bernstein’s work getting the acclaim it deserves,” Himelstein said. “As the book has gotten famous, I have been rereading, and getting a chance to enjoy these stories again.”

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