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From Barnes & NobleBarnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers
How do we become the people we are? In her remarkably astute memoir, Pulitzer Prize-winning book critic Caldwell examines her life, and comes to the realization that while she's a product of Texas and a child of the '50s and '60s, she's also very much her father's daughter.
Caldwell is a believer that Texas is as much a state of mind as a state of the Union. An open landscape that inspired loneliness, fearsome storms of biblical proportions, and a scorching heat relieved by afternoons spent in the cooler environs of the local library are just some of her childhood memories. As the political environment heats up, Caldwell becomes a fervent antiwar activist, despite her father's veteran status and prowar stance. And when she later moves to Massachusetts, she uncovers an old family secret, and with this discovery begins to come to terms with her origins.
Caldwell's immense love of literature peppers the pages of her work, enchanting readers with mentions of the books that helped her grasp her life and "ride it to victory." From Faulkner to Styron to Uris and Kerouac, Caldwell's beloved writers have helped her recognize the kind of person she wanted to be. Often comic, sometimes poignant, and composed with intelligence and emotion, A Strong West Wind offers a sharp analysis of an examined life by a writer worth knowing. (Spring 2006 Selection)