New Stories from the South: The Year's Best 1988

Overview

In this ninth volume of New Stories from the South, you'll find characters you wish you knew, along with others you'll be glad you don't: a boy who wears his mother's shoes as his father lies dying, a young mother dying of cancer who decides to do some living in the meantime, women talking trash as they peel crawfish, a man who videotapes a Bonanza rerun over his wife's sonogram, and a recent college grad calling home to tell Dad about her sixty-three-year-old groom-to-be who's about to make Dad a grandfather, ...
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Former Library book. Shows some signs of wear, and may have some markings on the inside. 100% Money Back Guarantee. Shipped to over one million happy customers. Your purchase ... benefits world literacy! Read more Show Less

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1988 Hardcover Good in good dust jacket. Good, In good dust jacket. Sewn binding. Paper over boards.

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Chapel Hill: 1988. Hard Cover First Edition, First printing Signed by five authors at the head of their stories-Barbara Kingsolver, Richard Bausch, Jill McCorkle, James W. Hall, ... Larry Brown. AS NEW IN DJ. Read more Show Less

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Overview

In this ninth volume of New Stories from the South, you'll find characters you wish you knew, along with others you'll be glad you don't: a boy who wears his mother's shoes as his father lies dying, a young mother dying of cancer who decides to do some living in the meantime, women talking trash as they peel crawfish, a man who videotapes a Bonanza rerun over his wife's sonogram, and a recent college grad calling home to tell Dad about her sixty-three-year-old groom-to-be who's about to make Dad a grandfather, and - well you get the idea. The year's best southern stories are as diverse as their writers, some of whom are well-known and widely published while others are brand-new and just getting started.

"Maybe the best annual anthology around."--Kirkus Reviews. This year's edition--the ninth--conveys universal themes told with southern style. Here, such authors as Barry Hannah, Nanci Kincaid, and Robert Love Taylor speak about issues of race, manhood, death, companionship, and the uniquely southern sport of stock car racing. Includes authors' notes.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Ravenel, Best American Short Stories editor throughout the '80s, has done a wonderful job of selecting the stories for this, the ninth in the New Stories series. Spotlighting such literary luminaries as Barry Hannah, Frederick Barthelme, Nanci Kincaid, Ethan Canin and Reynolds Price, Ravenel also recognizes upcoming talents Melanie Sumner and George Singleton, whose stories hold up well among such weighty company. Voice varies greatly between Hannah's drugged-out lyricism in ``Nicodemus Bluff'' and Nancy Krusoe's staccato prose in ``Landscape and Dream.'' That these 16 stories are more about living anywhere than particularly down South is best evidenced in Sumner's ``My Other Life,'' in which a Tennessee belle finds herself, via the Peace Corps, in Muslim Africa. The universal themes on which these stories touch create a collection greater than the sum of its parts. ``That there is the supernatural,'' a woman tells her farmer husband near the end of Leon Rooke's ``The Heart Must from Its Breaking.'' The supernatural often appears in these stories as the mysterious workings of a higher being, though the stories themselves appeal to a different holy tradition-that of Faulkner and O'Connor. An appendix of magazines and an index of previous volumes serve as reference resources. (Oct.)
Library Journal
This anthology of 16 short stories is a testament to the vitality of Southern writers and the richness of their subjects. Character, family discord, the confusion of adolescence, poverty, racism, and legend-these topics and more are powerfully but subtly addressed. The protagonists have a humanity and vulnerability that make them particularly appealing. In Nanci Kincaid's "Pretending the Bed Was a Raft," a young woman plans her death down to the specific clothing for her burial and seeks a suitable companion for her husband. Pamela Erbe's "Sweet Tooth" features a girl and a character reminiscent of Boo Radley, ominous but basically harmless. In Ethan Canin's "The Palace Thief," a young schoolteacher is compromised by a recalcitrant student and falls prey to the same ploy 40 years later at the hands of the same individual. Each story is followed by a biography of the author and a paragraph about what inspired it. Highly recommended.-Kimberly G. Allen, MCI Corporate Information Resources Ctr., Washington, D.C.
Alice Joyce
Ravenel gathers 16 gems reflecting luminous and precise visions of other worlds. The writers featured--Barry Hannah, Reynolds Price, and Pamela Erbe, among them--have located these worlds in distinctly southern regions. A perfect example is "Peeling," by John Sayles, who appears to have listened in on a group of women peeling crawfish for Big Antoine's cajun restaurant. Then there is Nanci Kincaid's amazing tale, "Pretending the Bed Was a Raft," in which a young mother with cancer decides to enjoy whatever bit of life she has left. She takes a lover, finds her husband a new woman, and makes plenty of lists.
Mary Ellen Quinn
Selected from magazines issued between January and December, 1992, this compilation offers many pleasures. Older, established writers such as Peter Taylor rub shoulders with relative newcomers such as Jill McCorkle; Pulitzer Prize-winner Robert Olen Butler shares honors with lesser-known writers such as Edward Jones. The stories are set in the South, from Washington, D.C., to rural Texas, but they are not "regional," as Ravenel points out in her introduction. The themes are diverse, from youth, in Elizabeth Hunnewell's "Family Planning" and Kevin Calder's "Name Me This River," to married life, as in Wendell Berry's depiction of a very new marriage in "A Jonquil for Mary Rose" and Annette Sanford's portrait of a very old marriage in "Helens and Roses," to old age, in Richard Bausch's "Evening," to, finally, death, in Peter Taylor's "The Waiting Room," and life reaffirmed, in Lee Merrill Byrd's extremely moving "Major Six Pockets."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780912697901
  • Publisher: Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill
  • Publication date: 9/1/1988
  • Pages: 264

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