9780684853765

Out of the Woods: Stories

Offutt, Chris

ISBN 10: 0684853760 / 0-684-85376-0
ISBN 13: 9780684853765
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: 2000
Binding: Softcover
Editorial Reviews for this title:
Synopsis:
Seven years ago, Chris Offutt made his literary debut with Kentucky Straight, a fiercely original collection that earned him not only critical praise but many prestigious awards.
The eight new stories in Out of the Woods mark Offutt's return to the form in which he first displayed his astonishing talent. Offutt, who "draws landscape and constructs dialogue with the eyes and ears of a native son" (The Miami Herald), is on strong home turf here, capturing those who have left the Kentucky hills and long to return. These are stories of gravediggers and drifters, gamblers and truck drivers a long way from home, tales that are so full of hard edges they can't help but tell some hard truths.

Review:
Out of the Woods starts with one man leaving his Kentucky hollow and ends with another who realizes he can't return. In between, Chris Offutt's broke, lonely, or just plain down-on-their-luck characters find out exactly how difficult it is to go home again, and how equally difficult it is to stop wishing they could. The critically acclaimed author of The Good Brother (a novel), as well as a memoir and a previous collection of stories, Offutt writes with rare honesty, insight, and restraint. "Sometimes I don't think I've done anything to leave my mark in this world. I'm the kind of person the world leaves a mark on," admits the narrator of "Two-Eleven All Around." The same might be said of all Offutt's Appalachian transplants, from the small-town sheriff of "Melungeons," forever marked by the violence and beauty of his mountain upbringing, to the rootless ex-con of "Moscow, Idaho," who wonders "if he'd ever find a woman, a job he liked, or a town he wanted to stay in." These lives are rendered in prose stripped so bare it reads like poetry--and yet is not without its own flinty wit. Given his first glimpse of his brother-in-law's corpse, the protagonist of the title story allows as how "he didn't look dead, but Gerald didn't think he looked too good either. He looked like a man with a bad hangover that he might shake by dinner." These are characters who get inside your head and stories worth reading again and again. As spare and simple as a Shaker chair, Offutt's tales should prove every bit as enduring. --Mary Park

Review

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Out of the Woods: Stories (ISBN: 0684853760 / 0-684-85376-0)
Offutt, Chris
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Book Description: SIMON SCHUSTER, United States, 2000. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 203 x 133 mm. Language: English Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.This collection of eight stories by the award-winning author of The Good Brother captures the lives of men shaped by the rough, isolated culture of rural Kentucky. Bookseller Inventory # APC9780684853765

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