The American Storybagby Gerald Hausman
The stories in THE AMERICAN STORYBAG are a fleeting yet incisive look at American life, primarily on the road, but sometimes on or in the water, and have been collected by Gerald Hausman since 1965. Some of the tales are very brief and may be called "sudden stories". Many of them deal with human survival - an autistic boy lost in a trackless swamp; a young woman who falls in love with a supernatural creature; a young man who finds himself by finding his horse. Some of the tales are mere messages left on a cell phone. Others, like the story "Bimini Blue" tell about a Navajo healing ceremony given to a famous author who committed suicide. There are stories of ghosts, demons, fearsome predators, and wise old men who take the innocent in hand and lead them on the road to wisdom. These are tales of innocence and anguish, fantasy and fable, humor and heart. In them we hear the voices of a lost America - an America of folk heroes fading fast from view and crying out to be heard.
- Wilder Publications
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.36(d)
and post it to your social network
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
See all customer reviews >
This author has been collecting stories since 1965. He loved to listen to stories which he scribbled down and later retold on paper. These tales focus on every aspect of American life. As I was reading them, I had the distinct feeling that I was sitting around a campfire listening to a storytelling master. Hausman has won numerous awards for his yarns, which speak of ghosts, demons, fantasy, humor, truths, and everyday life. The author divides his tales into sections like Heroes, On the Road, Humor, Reflections, Out of this World, Moments of Truth, and Yarns. He has been compared to Mark Twain. The reader feels as if he is there in the story. Some stories will inspire you like the tale about an autistic child who survived a struggle in the swamp, some of them portray the legends of Native Americans as in The Horse of the Navajo or the bravery of a father and son in A Real Life Goliath. The Discussion Questions that Hausman suggests are a wonderful beginning for students or book groups to use as a jumping off point for further exploration of the subject matter in individual stories. These questions could also be the basis of interesting essays on many topics. Teachers might want to use them in connection with other curriculum areas. The questions also assist in understanding the deeper layers of culture surrounding them. Finally, the author interview included at the end of the collection provides insight into why the author is so successful as a storyteller, lecturer and writer. Recommended for readers age eight and older, all those who love to tell stories or listen to them!
Hausman is a master. No question there. The American Storybag exemplifies this fact. Wonderful folklore, fantastic anecdotes, poetry at times and always poetry in prose. There's something for everyone here, stories to open the eyes, ears, heart, and soul. My personal favorite section is On the Road: It's Hausman sprinkled with just a pinch of Kerouac and a dash of Saroyan, and great titles like "The Billboard at the End of the World" and "The Railroad Oil Field Cotton Boll Blues". Educational, entertaining, thoughtful and reflective. I love Gerald Hausman's work, and have for many years. If you've read his work before, I know you'll love this one. And if you haven't, this is a really good one to start with. I can't recommend this one enough.
I loved every page!