Jeanne M. Leiby Downriver

ISBN 13: 9780932112552

Downriver

4.08 avg rating
( 24 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780932112552: Downriver

Winner of the 2006 Doris Bakwin Award for Writing by a Woman. Contest judge Quinn Dalton wrote: 'These eleven stories are fueled by a robust mix of voices children, young women, mothers, fathers all of whom are driven to survive past losses or the overwhelming challenges of their present circumstances. Take for example Nike Site, told from the perspective of ten-year-old Petie, which starkly depicts the landscape of children, where a nuclear plant defines the edge of their world. The story buzzes with the tension between what children are exposed to and what they are told; what they know and what the adults try futilely to hide from them. Within this collection, I had my favorites, but every story delivered on its promise to let us into a world of fully realized, breathing human beings whose lives might be different from ours in the details, but whose hopes and fears we recognize, and whose fates matter to us as much as our own. Another pleasure of this book was the precision of the language, the tight and natural dialogue, simple on the surface yet rich with subtext. I didn't want to stop reading, and when I had to, I went back as soon as I could as we do with any place we love to visit.'

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About the Author:

Jeanne Leiby grew up downriver Detroit. She graduated from the University of Michigan, earned her MA from the Bread Loaf School of English/Middlebury College, and her MFA from the University of Alabama. Her stories, many of them collected here, have appeared in Fiction, New Orleans Review, The Greensboro Review, and Indiana Review, among others. For ten years, she has lived in Orlando, Florida, teaching creative writing at the University of Central Florida and editing The Florida Review. In 2008, she will move to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, as an associate professor of English at Louisiana State University and editor of The Southern Review.

Review:

'A stunning debut collection.' --Wendell Mayo

'Jeanne Leiby's beautifully tough-minded prose conveys an essential truth about life downriver from the quintessential American city. Her truth has an eerie ring to it in 2008, when most of America is being swept farther and farther downriver from the dreams of our parents and grandparents.' --David Huddle

'Red. Right. Returning. Remember that. And you'll never get lost.' These instructions work well when they re not metaphorical. As metaphor, as instructions for living, they might give us some hope in a world that we are either leaving or should be leaving, a world that calls us back too often. In Jeanne Leiby's Downriver, there's a lot worth leaving, a lot we can't leave behind. One of her narrator s muses that We are made of ash and soot, nurtured by the waters of the near-dead river, and nothing can change it. Downriver is cloud of coal dust, a river in the shadow of the Enrico Fermi Cooling Plant, a place where a father remembers the good days when rats were culinary treats. Downriver is a collection of stories and characters you won't forget and won't want to. There's beauty to found in slag and ruined rivers; there's much that we who've lived in these places carry with us. Maybe sometimes we want to say I m from someplace else. But we know in our hearts that Detroit, Gary, or Pittsburgh are places of beauty too. Leiby says, 'Watch the smokestack flames perpetually burning off methane gases like the eternal flame, and then you tell me this place doesn't look like the Emerald City.' It does; I've seen it. --Rick Campbell

'Jeanne Leiby's beautifully tough-minded prose conveys an essential truth about life downriver from the quintessential American city. Her truth has an eerie ring to it in 2008, when most of America is being swept farther and farther downriver from the dreams of our parents and grandparents.' --David Huddle

'A stunning debut collection.' --Wendell Mayo

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

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Jeanne M. Leiby
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