Hard living, missed opportunities, and dogged persistence in the pursuit of impossible dreams are themes that help unite the linked stories in Jim Sanderson’s fine new story cycle Faded Love. In "Potential," a washed-up football hero turned used car salesman makes an ill-fated attempt to find meaning in life by coaching prep football. An exotic dancer, nearing the end of her prime, faces the choice of making a living or practicing her art in "Stripping." In "Hemingway’s Lighthouse," a middle-aged college dean and failed writer must fire a colleague whose works of literature he admires and envies, and with whom he was once in love. "Like in the Movies" follows a restless deliveryman with marriage troubles as he drives through New Mexico, gets drunk with a vagrant Kiowa, and hooks up with a lonely lady in Taos. The characters Sanderson weaves in and out of these sometimes side-splitting, sometimes gut-wrenching stories are people whose poignantly-rendered lives resonate long after the last page has been turned.   —Andrew Geyer