They Came Like Swallows (Modern Library Series)

Overview

First published in 1937, They Came Like Swallows was William Maxwell's second novel. It tells of an ordinary American family overtaken by the devastating epidemic of the Spanish influenza of 1918. The book begins on the day before the armistice in a small midwestern town, and the events are seen from the perspective, in turn, of eight-year-old Peter Morison - called Bunny; of his older brother, Robert; and of their father. They are witnesses to a domestic tragedy that is written...
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New York 1997 Hard Cover First Modern Library Edition Near Fine in Near Fine jacket 1st Modern Library edition; previous owners name penned facing title page; A tight, clean ... copy. 191pp. Read more Show Less

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NY: 1997 Hardcover Fine in Fine dust jacket 067960247X. Introduction by the author. First printing thus. Fine in a fine dust jacket.

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New York, NY 1997 Hard Cover First Thus Near Fine in Near Fine jacket 7.5" x 4.75" Signed by Author [CC]. Signed by the author on the title page. 190 pp. Hardcover, bound in ... cloth with dust jacket. Light shelf-wear. Read more Show Less

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New York, NY 1997 Hard Cover First Modern Library Near Fine in Near Fine jacket 7.5" x 4.75" Signed. [CC-ML]. Signed by the author on the title page. 191 pp. Hardcover, bound in ... cloth with dust jacket. Light shelf-wear. Read more Show Less

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Overview

First published in 1937, They Came Like Swallows was William Maxwell's second novel. It tells of an ordinary American family overtaken by the devastating epidemic of the Spanish influenza of 1918. The book begins on the day before the armistice in a small midwestern town, and the events are seen from the perspective, in turn, of eight-year-old Peter Morison - called Bunny; of his older brother, Robert; and of their father. They are witnesses to a domestic tragedy that is written with beauty and a quite magnificent tenderness.

Through the eyes of two boys and their father, William Maxwell reveals the complex woman who is the unacknowledged source of their happiness--and whose death during the influenza epic of 1918 will devastate them all. They Came Like Swallows tenderly depicts the currents of love and need that run through every family--and whose true depth becomes evident only in moments of tragedy. 192 pp. 12,500 print.

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What People Are Saying

Howard Moss
By the time this second novel, They Came like Swallows, appeared in 1937, it is clear that William Maxwell is a special and wonderful gift to American fiction. It may be the definitive American novel about a child's relationship with his mother -- a subject so obvious and crucial, that it is rarely handled....The least flashy of writers, the writer's writer [Maxwell] is controlled and reserved, and yet magical at the same time. He is a master of fiction.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780679602477
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 8/26/1997
  • Series: Modern Library Series
  • Edition description: 1997 Modern Library Edition
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 191
  • Product dimensions: 4.97 (w) x 7.58 (h) x 0.66 (d)

Meet the Author

William Maxwell has written a new Introduction for this Modern Library edition.
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