Southern Fiction

A Death in the Family by James AgeeA Death in the Family
Agee, James
1998
Forty years after its original publication, James Agee's last novel seems, more than ever, an American classic. For in his lyrical, sorrowful account of a man's death and its impact on his family, Agee painstakingly created a small world of domestic happiness and then showed how quickly and casually it could be destroyed. On a sultry summer night in 1915, Jay Follet leaves his house in Knoxville, Tennessee, to tend to his father, whom he believes is dying. The summons turns out to be a false alarm, but on his way back to his family, Jay has a car accident and is killed instantly. Dancing back and forth in time and braiding the viewpoints of Jay's wife, brother, and young son, Rufus, Agee creates an overwhelmingly powerful novel of innocence, tenderness, and loss that should be read aloud for the sheer music of its prose. "An utterly individual and original book...one of the most deeply worked out expressions of human feeling that I have ever read."--Alfred Kazin, New York Times Book Review "It is, in the full sense, poetry....The language of the book, at once luminous and discreet...remains in the mind."--New Republic "People I know who read A Death in the Family forty years ago still talk about it. So do I. It is a great book, and I'm happy to see it done anew."--Andre Dubus, author of Dancing After Hours and Meditations From A Moveable Chair From the Trade Paperback edition. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
Bastard Out of Carolina  by Dorothy AllisonBastard Out of Carolina
Allison, Dorothy
1992
Greenville County, South Carolina, a wild, lush place, is home to the Boatwright family-rough-hewn men who drink hard and shoot up each other's trucks, and indomitable women who marry young and age all too quickly. At the heart of this astonishing novel is Ruth Anne Boatwright, known simply as Bone, a South Carolina bastard with an annotated birth certificate to tell the tale. Observing everything with the mercilessly keen eye of a child, Bone finds herself caught in a family triangle that will test the loyalty of her mother, Anney. Her stepfather, Daddy Glen, calls Bone "cold as death, mean as a snake, and twice as twisty," yet Anney needs Glen. At first gentle with Bone, Daddy Glen becomes steadily colder and more furious-until their final, harrowing encounter, from which there can be no turning back. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
Jayber Crow by Berry WendellJayber Crow
Wendell, Berry
2000
Publishers Weekly Review: The role of community in the shaping of character is a recurring theme in the work of poet, essayist and novelist Berry, as evidenced once more in this gratifying novel set in Berry's fictional Port William, Ky. Jayber Crow, town barber from 1937 until 1969, is born in the environs of Port William, but after the deaths of his parents and, later, his guardians, he is sent to an out-of-town orphanage at the age of 10. Returning 13 years later, in the flood year of 1937, the solitary young man goes on to learn the comradely ways of the town. "In modern times much of the doing of the mighty has been the undoing of Port William and its kind," Crow reflects--a reflection, too, of Berry's often-stated beliefs that salvation must be local, that rootlessness and a fixation on the postindustrial era's bright new toys will destroy us environmentally and economically. Crow earns his living with simple tools; he becomes a church sexton, though he is not unthinkingly pious; and his unrequited love for farmer's wife Mattie Chatham is pure and strong enough to bring him serene faith. In contrast, Mattie's husband, Troy, the novel's villain, disturbs the "patterns and cycles of work" on Mattie's family farm, trumpeting "whatever I see, I want" and using a tractor. The tractor stands for the introduction of new machinery and the unraveling of the fabric of family farming. It is not surprising when Troy cheats on his wife nor does it come as a shock when the Chatham's young daughter becomes a victim of dire chance. Berry's narrative style is deliberately traditional, and the novel's pace is measured and leisurely. Crow's life, which begins as WWI is about to erupt, is emblematic of a century of upheaval, and Berry's anecdotal and episodic tale sounds a challenge to contemporary notions of progress. It is to Berry's credit that a novel so freighted with ideas and ideology manages to project such warmth and luminosity. 12-city author tour. (Sept.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information, Inc. From: Reed Elsevier Inc. Copyright Reed Business Information
Deep Summer by Gwen BristowDeep Summer
Bristow, Gwen
1996
Publication info:  Cutchogue, N.Y. : Buccaneer Books, c1976.  Physical descrip:  275 p. : geneal. table ; 23 cm.
A Miracle of Catfish: A Novel in Progress by Larry BrownA Miracle of Catfish: A Novel in Progress
Brown, Larry
2007
"This anthem to the writer's own North Mississippi land and the hard-working, hard-drinking, hard-loving men it spawns is the story of one year in the lives of five characters - an old farmer with a new pond he wants stocked with baby catfish; a bankrupt fish pond stocker who secretly releases his forty-pound brood catfish into the farmer's pond; a little boy from the trailer home across the road who inadvertently hooks the behemoth catfish; the boy's inept father; and a former convict down the road who kills a second time to save his daughter."--BOOK JACKET. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
Cold Sassy Tree by Olive BurnsCold Sassy Tree
Burns, Olive
2007
The unforgettable characters of Cold Sassy, Georgia, are presented in this heartwarming story of modern times coming to a small Southern town. "Rich with emotion, humor and tenderness".--Washington Post Book World. Received enormous national publicity as a Hallmark Hall of Fame TV-movie starring Faye Dunaway. Copyright #169; Libri GmbH. All rights reserved. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe by Fannie FlaggFried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe
Flagg, Fannie
2005
Released for the first time in mass market paperback, this classic and folksy novel takes readers back to the thirties, where a friendship blooms between two girls who run a homey, little cafe in Alabama. A story of food, love, laughter, and even murder unfolds as an elderly woman relates her life story to a middle-aged friend. Copyright #169; Libri GmbH. All rights reserved. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
Three Plays: Dividing the Estate, the Trip to Bountiful, and the Young Man from Atlanta by Horton, Jr. FooteThree Plays: Dividing the Estate, the Trip to Bountiful, and the Young Man from Atlanta
Foote, Horton, Jr.
2009
Bringing together the rich characters and wry humor of a celebrated Texas scribe, this book collects three of Foote's most recognized plays. In these works, Foote deftly combines the claustrophobia of the Southern families from Tennessee Williams, the physical and psychological dysfunctions of Eugene O'Neill's families, and the humor and pathos of small town Southern life portrayed by Flannery O'Connor. In the dark comedy "Dividing the Estate," matriarch Stella Gordon is dead set against the parceling out of her clan's land despite the financial woes brought on by the oil bust of the 1980s. In the course of the play, the power of petty self-interest and long-held resentments makes even painful compromise an elusive goal. Widely acclaimed in a 2007 production at Primary Stages, the play will open on Broadway in November 2008. In "The Trip to Bountiful," Carrie Watts is determined to escape a cramped, unpleasant life in a small Houston apartment with her son and avaricious daughter-in-law. Her burning desire is to return to the now desolate town of her childhood, against the inexorability of change and the refuge of memory. Foote earned an Oscar nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay in 1985 for his work on "Bountiful," The Pulitzer Prize-winning "The Young Man from Atlanta" tells the story of a couple living in Houston in 1950, suffering the aftershocks of the mysterious death of their son. Will and Lily Dale Kidder try to hold onto their beliefs about their son's life and death and the possibilities for their own lives, but both are dealt a shattering blow by the young man of the title, a friend of their son's who never appears in the play. Foote's pitch-perfect characters and sensitiveeye for interpersonal relationships continue to place him at the top of playwrights working today. This new collection brings his best to new audiences.
I Hate to See That Evening Sun Go Down: Collected Stories by William GayI Hate to See That Evening Sun Go Down: Collected Stories
Gay, William
2003
William Gay firmly established himself as "the big new name to include in the storied annals of Southern Lit" (Esquire) with his debut novel, The Long Home, and his critically acclaimed follow-up, Provinces of Night. Like Faulkner's Mississippi and Cormac McCarthy's American West, Gay's Tennessee is redolent of broken, colorful souls hard at work charting the pathos of their interior lives. His debut collection, I Hate to See That Evening Sun Go Down, brings together what Gay's dedicated readers are eager for and what new readers will find the perfect introduction to his world: thirteen stories that are mined from this same fertile soil teeming with the grizzled, everyday folk that Gay is famous for bringing to life. In these pages readers meet old man Meecham, who escapes from his new nursing home only to find his son has rented their homestead to "white trash"; Quincy Nell Qualls, who not only falls in love with the town lothario but, pregnant, is faced with an inescapable end when he abandons her; Finis and Doneita Beasley, whose forty-year marriage is broken up by a dead dog; Bobby Pettijohn, who is awakened in the middle of the night by the noise and lights of a search party looking for clues after a body is discovered in his backwoods. William Gay expertly sets these conflicted people who make bad choices in life and love against lush back-country scenery, and somehow manages to defy moral logic as we grow to love his characters for the weight of their human errors. Diverse as these tales are, what connects them is the powerful voice of a born storyteller. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
Ellen Foster by Kaye GibbonsEllen Foster
Gibbons, Kaye
1997
One of the most talked-about and endearing first novels in years bears the story of a female Huck Finn and her search for a true home. Copyright #169; Libri GmbH. All rights reserved. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
The Keepers of the House by Shirley GrauThe Keepers of the House
Grau, Shirley
2003
Entrenched on the Same Land Since the Early 1800s, the Howlands have, for seven generations, been pillars of their Southern community. Extraordinary family lore has been passed down to Abigail Howland, but not all of it. When shocking facts come to light about her late grandfather William's relationship with Margaret Carmichael, a black housekeeper, the community is outraged, and quickly gathers to vent its fury on Abigail. Alone in the house the Howlands built, she is at once shaken by those who have betrayed her, and determined to punish the town that has persecuted her and her kin. Morally intricate, graceful, and suspenseful, The Keepers of the House has become a modern classic. Book jacket. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora  HurstonTheir Eyes Were Watching God
Hurston, Zora
1990
Fair and long-legged, independent and articulate, Janie Crawford sets out to be her own person -- no mean feat for a black woman in the '30s. Janie's quest for identity takes her through three marriages and into a journey back to her roots. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
The Secret Life of Bees by Sue KiddThe Secret Life of Bees
Kidd, Sue
2002
Living on a peach farm in South Carolina with her harsh, unyielding father, Lily Owens has shaped her entire life around one devastating, blurred memory - the afternoon her mother was killed, when Lily was four. Since then, her only real companion has been the fierce-hearted, and sometimes just fierce, black woman Rosaleen, who acts as her "stand-in mother."" "When Rosaleen insults three of the deepest racists in town, Lily knows it's time to spring them both free. They take off in the only direction Lily can think of, toward a town called Tiburon, South Carolina - a name she found on the back of a picture amid the few possessions left by her mother." "There they are taken in by an eccentric trio of black beekeeping sisters named May, June, and August. Lily thinks of them as the calendar sisters and enters their mesmerizing secret world of bees and honey, and of the Black Madonna who presides over this household of strong, wise women. Maternal loss and betrayal, guilt and forgiveness entwine in a story that leads Lily to the single thing her heart longs for most. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
Nancy Culpepper: Stories by Bobbie MasonNancy Culpepper: Stories
Mason, Bobbie
2006
"Always adventurous, Nancy Culpepper travels far and wide - searching, seeking. The narrative sweep of her life traverses the turbulent sixties, the Vietnam War, the eighties and the foreboding death of John Lennon, and the new millennium - when a self-assured Nancy finally emerges. These humorous and often touching stories recount her courtship and marriage to Jack, her relationship with her precocious son, and the deep, loving bond between her parents, Spence and Lila Culpepper. Eventually, Nancy's marriage is threatened by a cultural divide that plagued her and Jack from the start. But when she inherits the Culpepper family farm and discovers more pieces of her ancestral puzzle, she realizes that her life is assuming its proper shape. Later, standing on a lonely mountain in England, she sees the world from a surprising perspective." "Bestselling author Bobbie Ann Mason's prizewinning Nancy Culpepper chronicles have appeared in The New Yorker, The Boston Globe, The Southern Review, and other distinguished literary anthologies. She has compiled these stories into one definitive collection, which includes the novella Spence + Lila, two new, never-before-published stories, and one Pushcart Prize winner."--BOOK JACKET. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
Suttree by Cormac McCarthySuttree
McCarthy, Cormac
1992
"Suttree is the story of Cornelius Suttree, who has forsaken a life of privilege with his prominent family to live in a dilapidated houseboat on the Tennessee River near Knoxville. Remaining on the margins of the outcast community there - a brilliantly imagined collection of eccentrics, criminals, and squatters - he rises above the physical and human squalor with detachment, humor, and dignity."--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullersThe Heart Is a Lonely Hunter
McCullers, Carson
2004
When she was only twenty-three, Carson McCullers's first novel created a literary sensation. She was very special, one of America's superlative writers who conjures up a vision of existence as terrible as it is real, who takes us on shattering voyages into the depths of the spiritual isolation that underlies the human condition. This novel is the work of a supreme artist, Carson McCullers's enduring masterpiece. The heroine is the strange young girl, Mick Kelly. The setting is a small Southern town, the cosmos universal and eternal. The characters are the damned, the voiceless, the rejected. Some fight their loneliness with violence and depravity, Some with sex or drink, and some -- like Mick -- with a quiet, intensely personal search for beauty. "From the Paperback edition." Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
The Complete Stories by Flannery O'ConnorThe Complete Stories
O'Connor, Flannery
1971
Winner of the National Book Award The publication of this extraordinary volume firmly established Flannery O'Connor's monumental contribution to American fiction. There are thirty-one stories here in all, including twelve that do not appear in the only two story collections O'Connor put together in her short lifetime--"Everything That Rises Must Converge "and "A Good Man Is Hard to Find," O'Connor published her first story, "The Geranium," in 1946, while she was working on her master's degree at the University of Iowa. Arranged chronologically, this collection shows that her last story, "Judgement Day"--sent to her publisher shortly before her death--is a brilliantly rewritten and transfigured version of "The Geranium." Taken together, these stories reveal a lively, penetrating talent that has given us some of the most powerful and disturbing fiction of the twentieth century. Also included is an introduction by O'Connor's longtime editor and friend, Robert Giroux. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
A Short History of a Small Place by T PearsonA Short History of a Small Place
Pearson, T
2003
Marvelously funny, bittersweet, and beautifully evocative, the original publication of A Short History of a Small Place announced the arrival of one of our great Southern voices. Although T. R. Pearson's Neely, North Carolina, doesn't appear on any map of the state, it has already earned a secure place on the literary landscape of the South. In this introduction to Neely, the young narrator, Louis Benfield, recounts the tragic last days of Miss Myra Angelique Pettigrew, a local spinster and former town belle who, after years of total seclusion, returns flamboyantly to public view--with her pet monkey, Mr. Britches. Here is a teeming human comedy inhabited by some of the most eccentric and endearing characters ever encountered in literature.
The Color Purple by Alice WalkerThe Color Purple
Walker, Alice
2006
Winning a Pulitzer Prize in 1983, this feminist novel about an abused and uneducated black woman's struggle for empowerment was praised for the depth of its female characters and for its eloquent use of black English vernacular. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
All the King's Men by Robert WarrenAll the King's Men
Warren, Robert
1996
As relevant today as it was 50 years ago, "All the King's Men" is a classic novel about American politics. Set in the 1930s, this Pulitzer Prize-winning novel traces the rise and fall of demagogue Willie Stark, a fictional character based on the real-life Huey Long of Louisiana. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
The Collected Stories of Eudora Welty by Eudora WeltyThe Collected Stories of Eudora Welty
Welty, Eudora
1982
This complete collection includes all the published stories of Eudora Welty. There are forty-one stories in all, including the earlier collections A Curtain of Green, The Wide Net, The Golden Apples, and The Bride of the Innisfallen, as well as previously uncollected stories. With a Preface written by the Author especially for this edition. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
Quite a Year for Plums by Bailey WhiteQuite a Year for Plums
White, Bailey
1982
Make it easy on yourself, read Bailey White in Large Print Trade Paperback Anyone who has read the bestselling Mama Makes Up Her Mind or listened to Bailey White's commentaries on NPR knows that she is a storyteller of inimitable wit and charm. #160; #160;Now, in her stunningly accomplished first novel, she introduces us to the peculiar yet lovable people who inhabit a small town in south Georgia. #160; #160;Meet serious, studious Roger, the peanut pathologist and unlikely love object of half the town's women. #160; #160;Meet Roger's ex-mother-in-law, Louise, who teams up with an ardent typographer in an attempt to attract outer-space invaders with specific combinations of letters and number. #160; #160;And meet Della, the bird artist who captivates Roger with the sensible but enigmatic notes she leaves on things she throws away at the Dumpster ("This fan works, but it makes a clicking sound and will not oscillate"). Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.
Look Homeward, Angel: A Story of the Buried Life by Thomas WolfeLook Homeward, Angel: A Story of the Buried Life
Wolfe, Thomas
2006
Thomas Wolfe's classic coming-of-age novel, first published in 1929, is a work of epic grandeur, evoking a time and place with extraordinary lyricism and precision. Set in Altamont, North Carolina, this semi-autobiographical novel tells the story of a restless young man who longs to escape his tumultuous family and his small town existence. Distributed by Syndetic Solutions, Inc.