Maud Casey follows her New York Times Notable debut, The Shape of Things to Come, with Drastic, a skillful, moving collection of stories. ""Seaworthy"" sets the tone as adolescent Irene and her father take a vacation, leaving her mentally ill mother behind. In ""Days at Home,"" a woman moves in with her mother, who goes on more dates than she does; the 48-year-old narrator of ""Talk Show Lady"" is hired to play a variety of dysfunctional guests on a Maury-style program. Casey infuses her characters' bleak situations with a winning combination of emotional resonance, subtle humor and wisdom. Agent, Alice Tasman.