The Best of the West IV: New Stories from the Wide Side of the Missouri

The Best of the West IV: New Stories from the Wide Side of the Missouri

by James Thomas
     
 

“We’re seeing a reinvention of our regional storytelling. It is our great good fortune. James and Denise Thomas are to be praised and praised.” —William Kittredge
The Imaginary West, the Real West, the New West, and the Old West converge in this celebration of that fascinating landscape. Selected from over 100 periodicals, 16 contemporary

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Overview

“We’re seeing a reinvention of our regional storytelling. It is our great good fortune. James and Denise Thomas are to be praised and praised.” —William Kittredge
The Imaginary West, the Real West, the New West, and the Old West converge in this celebration of that fascinating landscape. Selected from over 100 periodicals, 16 contemporary stories by both established writers and relative newcomers tell of the contradictions of a landscape where cowboys may wear tennis shoes and limos park near pickups, but it's still a long way between towns.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Of the omnibus's 20 stories, a few, like Elizabeth Tallent's superb ``No One's a Mystery,'' possess only indirect reference to the West, and others involve Southern characters and settings, pointing to the arbitrariness of classifying some literature by region. Richard Bausch's haunting ``The Man Who Knew Belle Starr'' is, in fact, also anthologized in Algonquin's New Stories From the South. Readers may wonder, too, why John Updike's ``Nevada,'' first published in the early '70s, is labeled here as ``new.'' Still, Thomas's ( Pictures, Moving ) first volume in a series includes many individual triumphs and, as a whole, it offers a provocative though bleak vision of American life far from the urban sprawl. Richard Ford and Raymond Carver satisfy with their customary deftness, and less-known writers account for pleasant surprises. Tom McNeal's ``True'' captures the sense of random violence that often tinges small Western towns, and Rick DeMarinis's ``Under the Wheat'' juxtaposes a man's doomed marriage with his work at nuclear silos for mesmeric effect. (Nov.)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780393307931
Publisher:
Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date:
10/28/1991
Pages:
268
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.80(d)

Meet the Author

James Thomas has received two NEA grants and a Stegner
Fellowship; he lives in Xenia, Ohio.

James and Denise Thomas live in Ohio, where he teaches at Wright State University.

Ron Hansen is the author of more than 20 books, stories, and anthologies. He received the Award in Literature from the American
Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters for his book Nebraska, a collection of short fiction, in 1989. Some of his other works include
Mariette in Ecstasy; the children's book The Shadowmaker; Desperadoes; The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, which won the John Edgar Wideman Award in 1984; and the novel Atticus, a suspenseful murder mystery detailing a father's fierce love for his son.
Atticus was a finalist for the National Book Award in 1996. Among the anthologies written by Hansen are The Sun So Hot I Froze To Death, Can I
Just Sit Here For A While?, and True Romance. His short stories, with titles ranging from "His Dog" to "Playland," have appeared in the
Stanford Alumni Magazine, Atlantic Monthly, the Iowa Review, Esquire,
and many others. Besides holding Guggenheim and National Endowment for the Arts fellowships, Hansen has received a Lyndhurst Foundation Grant and is a fellow of the University of Michigan Society of Fellows. Hansen has also held the position of Gerald Manley Hopkins S.J. Professor of
Arts and Humanities at Santa Clara University.

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