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Mozart and Leadbelly: Stories and Essays

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2006

    one of america's best

    Ernest Gaines is one of my favorite writers. I had moved to Nebraska to do a Ph.D. in philosophy, until one day at the public library I discovered Mr. Gaines' fiction. After reading Bloodline and A Lesson Before Dying, I dropped out of the doctoral program and started writing fiction. And that's what I've been doing for the past four years: writing fiction. As I read and re-read Gaines' work, I was hoping he would publish a new novel or short story collection. So when I heard Mozart and Leadbelly was coming out, I was excited. This new book is a collection of essays, interviews, and Mr. Gaine's early fiction (including his first published short story 'The Turtles'). These essays are beautiful pieces of writing each one tells a different story: Gaines' early life as a boy from Louisiana, his college days in San Francisco, advice on writing, and much more. The interviews show Gaines in a more informal settings as he sits on his front porch in Louisiana discussing his favorite writers as well as other influences on his fiction (painters and composers). This is a fun book, and I have marked off several passages that have allowed me to crystalize what I'd been trying to say about writing but couldn't until I read this book. Also, after reading Mozart and Leadbelly, you'll learn that Mr. Gaines is at work on a new novel, something his friends hope will be his next masterpiece. Ernest Gaines is a fine writer, and it's amazing how simple and beautiful the language is. He has created a world all his own and his voice is unmistakable. This is a major accomplishment from one America's finest living writers.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 9, 2005

    Very interesting

    This was very different than anything I've read by Ernest Gaines before. He explains his writing process for several of his most famous books. This collection also includes a few great short stories including 'Christ Walked Down Main Street' with a narrative explaining how the story evolved....Very powerful!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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