The Smoky Mountain Cage Bird Society

Overview

The stories here take place in life's everyday settings: a coffee shop where a small miracle occurs, a local garage where a brother's loyalty is tested, a pizza parlor where a family's sense of faith is renewed, a backyard that offers a new view of home. The book is filled with moments that show how even the simplest events illuminate our lives. In the 1950s a lonely aunt teaches young Skoyles how to escort a lady, and in so doing, allows herself to experience a new part of the world as well. His six-year-old ...
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Overview

The stories here take place in life's everyday settings: a coffee shop where a small miracle occurs, a local garage where a brother's loyalty is tested, a pizza parlor where a family's sense of faith is renewed, a backyard that offers a new view of home. The book is filled with moments that show how even the simplest events illuminate our lives. In the 1950s a lonely aunt teaches young Skoyles how to escort a lady, and in so doing, allows herself to experience a new part of the world as well. His six-year-old son's crayon drawing reveals a wisdom only innocence can bring, and teaches Skoyles one of the most important lessons in a parent's life. A prize-winning, 112-pound pumpkin, grown with a little faith and a lot of luck in his backyard, leaves Skoyles with the curious dilemma of how to move the behemoth. Written with humor, affection, and insight, The Smoky Mountain Cage Bird Society is both entertaining and inspirational. It speaks with a warmth and wisdom that renews our delight and awe at the commonplace wonders of life.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The tone of this collection of original essays by Emerson College (Mass.) writing professor Skoyles (A Little Faith) is established at the start, when the author's flip retort to his six-year-old son's threatening to leave home is misinterpreted in a way that reveals the boy's love for his father. And so it goes throughout this involving assemblage of homilies. They introduce us to two teens who allow a boy eyeing the prizes at an amusement park to pick whichever one he wants; one tale reveals a stop at a Connecticut pizzeria by a house-hunting couple too suspicious to take advantage of help that might save them much time and trouble. In another piece, a maiden aunt devotes alternate Saturdays to introducing her nephew to the wonders of New York City. Not everything comes up roses in Skoyles's world. A once renowned professor strays, homeless, into Grand Central Station while a crowd gathers around a seller of sadistic videos. Yet overall the essays are uplifting. This is a book to slip into as you would an easy chair or your favorite pair of sneakers. (Aug.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781568361819
  • Publisher: Kodansha International
  • Publication date: 5/1/1997
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 192
  • Product dimensions: 5.83 (w) x 8.09 (h) x 0.88 (d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Harry's Card 1
Good Luck Charms 3
Midnight the Cat 7
A Brother's Love 11
Seeing 15
Yet 17
Country Living 19
My Road to College 23
A Story My Mother Told Me 27
Aunt Linda 29
La Panza's Coffee Shop 33
The Feast of Fools 39
Generous Strangers 43
A Memorable Christmas 47
Raccoons 51
Charlie Hays 55
Other People's Mail 59
Exquisite Sensitivity 63
All of Me 67
The Collector 69
Mr. Bass 75
Opposites 79
The Stick 83
Chang 85
The Smoky Mountain Cage Bird Society 89
Suffering 95
Need 99
Patron Saint 103
Cars 105
Frankie 111
A Mentor 117
The Hunting Jacket 123
An Old Steel Hammer 127
The Pumpkin Contest 131
Evidence 135
A Different Point of View 139
Thou Shalt Not 143
An Amateur's Guide to Fishing 147
Suspicion 151
The Lost Son 155
Good Intentions 157
The Problem Solver 161
Time 163
The World Authority on Silkworms 165
Wishes 169
Bus Trip 173
The Christmas Tree 177
Ritual at a Pizza Parlor 181
The Holy Ghost 185
Believe Nothing of What You Hear 189
Miss Leone 193
Staying Home 199
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