"Are some people born with that urge to share themselves in public? To behave privately, emotionally, majestically while strangers watch? To perform? David Kranes in stunningly singular fashion explores this need to expose the gifted self, re-inventing the way we look at celebrity. The stories are a raw and intimate journey into the rewards, the risks, and the souls of the stand-ups and fire-eaters, the daredevils and magicians, the people who ‘show off’ for us. And this of course includes Mr. Kranes himself. His prose does backflips; it’s brilliantly manic, beautifully mad, perfectly paced. And very funny.”
—Ethan Philips, actor and playwright
“Performers have one foot in this world and one in that of illusion, or maybe better, imagination. It’s the liminal space between the two that David Kranes, in his own sleight-of-hand performance, brilliantly explores. His tough, flint-like prose, unsparing in its search for what is true, reminds us that one person’s side-show is someone else’s main act, and, it gives us new ways to look at the world. Funny, disturbing, and in the end, deeply moving.”
—Bill Harley, entertainer and musician
“I love the sound of a "world-beyond-traffic," and the "no comprehension of next," in these stories. And the dancing fingers of the magician Ernie Fingers who has unexpected moments when his fingers seize up and the tailor who tells him to be still. Anyone who has experienced those moments of magic, epiphany or grace, in practice or performance, is well acquainted with those lurking moments when the gremlin comes out of the dark and all our fingers seize up. It's funny and powerful how Kranes depicts the tick, tick, tick of the mind. And he did make me think, oh, yes, "Sometimes a person's mind can be a stranger. A dark stranger."
—Russell Davis, juggler and playwright in residence at the People's Light and Theatre Company