Is there any type of writing that Joyce Carol Oates doesn’t knock out of the park? Any genre, any form? Her skills are best displayed when she delves into the mysteries of the human mind and the behaviors that follow. She accesses those recesses better than anyone. Which explains why she has won the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Life Achievement award, among many others. ZERO SUM, a collection of powerful and spellbinding short stories, is the perfect example of her skills. If you are a fan, these stories will burnish your love of her writing. If not, this is an excellent introduction to the works of one of America’s greatest writers. I could not recommend this more highly.