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Shrapnel explores the legacy of war in three generations of men from the Butler family. Bing Butler, a seventy-seven-year-old, right-wing widower and World War II veteran from Texas, reluctantly moves in with his feminist, antiwar daughter in West Virginia. Here he is forced to bury painful family secrets and stifle his tendencies toward racism, classism, and homophobia. His post-9/11 anxieties equally force him to grapple with these psychological foibles, as his daughter's only son rallies to enlist to serve overseas. Bing had once embraced such patriotic fervor, but after bullying his own son into going to Vietnam, he finds he must now muster a kind of emotional bravery he never knew he was capable of in order to keep the family together. At turns funny and at other turns frightening (and frighteningly honest), Shrapnel is surprising and ultimately greatly rewarding.
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Marie Manilla is a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop. Her fiction has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, Prairie Schooner, Mississippi Review, Calyx Journal, The Long Story, Portland Review, Kestrel, Echo Ink Review, and other journals. Her collection of stories, Still Life with Plums, was nominated for a Weatherford Award and ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year. Manilla has lived in both Huntington, West Virginia, and Houston, Texas, the settings for Shrapnel.Review:
The life that Bing Butler had imagined for himself has exploded, and he'll have to assemble a new one in West Virginia, a place known only through jokes and stereotypes. This crotchety Candide will be led astray and will experience terrible, ordinary betrayals on his way to a future he'd not imagined.
--Val Nieman, author of Blood Clay.
Shrapnel will hit you in surprising places. It is the story of an unforgettable character's internal warfare and the hot, wounding fragments of his fantasies, reveries, and regrets. Marie Manilla lays down every sentence thoroughly and lovingly. This is an author you can trust.
--Jacqueline St. Joan, author of My Sisters Made of Light
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Book Description River City Publishing, 2012. Hardcover. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P111579660843
Book Description River City Publishing, 2012. Hardcover. Condition: New. Brand New!. Seller Inventory # VIB1579660843
Book Description River City Publishing, 2012. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M1579660843