Cementville has a breathtaking set up: 1969. A small Kentucky town, known only for its excellent bourbon and passable cement, direct from the factory that gives the town its name. The favored local sons of Cementville’s most prominent families all joined the National Guard hoping to avoid the draft and the killing fields of Vietnam. They were sent to combat anyway, and seven boys were killed in a single, horrific ambush.
The novel opens as the coffins are making their way home, along with one remaining survivor, the now-maimed town quarterback recently rescued from a Vietnamese prison camp. Yet the return of the bodies sets off something inside of the town itself a sense of violence, a political reality, a gnawing unease with the future and soon, new bodies start turning up around town, pushing the families of Cementville into further alienation and grief.
|Edition description:||First Trade Paper Edition|
|Product dimensions:||4.90(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.90(d)|
About the Author
Paulette Livers is a Kentucky transplant to Chicago via Atlanta and Boulder, where she recently completed the MFA at the University of Colorado. Her work has appeared in The Southwest Review, The Dos Passos Review, Spring Gun Press , and elsewhere, and can be heard at the audio-journal Bound Off. Livers was awarded the 2012 Meyerson Prize for Fiction (for material from Cementville ), and received Honorable Mention for the Red Hen Press Short Story Award (also for material from Cementville). This is her first novel.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
A thoughtful story of one small town in the south and how it faced a time of great upheaval and unrest. I was moved and compelled by the premise - the bodies of fallen soldiers being returned home to their families - but what kept me reading were the fascinating characters. Each chapter we meet and re-meet various members of the town, of the central families of Cementville - and its exciting to see how they all fit together. The plot holds genuine twists and shocks --not every character makes it out of the story alive - and for me this novel offered the perfect reading experience. HIGHLY Recommended.
This multi-voiced story of a small Southern town reeling from war loss is a deeply compelling study of the ripple effects of faraway conflicts. Three-dimensional characters, a lush setting, and lyrical prose pulled me through the complex plot. Highly recommended by this finicky and critical reader!