Title: GOOD AS ANY - Scarce Fine Copy of The First ...
Publisher: New York City, NY: Harcourt Inc., 2002
Book Condition: Fine
Dust Jacket Condition: Fine
Signed: Signed by Author
Edition: 1st Edition.
1st Printing. Signed. 275 pages. Published in 2002. The author's debut collection of short stories. One of the most important literary debuts of our time. The First Hardcover Edition. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions. Published in a small and limited first print run as a hardcover original only. The First Edition is now scarce. Presents Timothy A. Westmoreland's "Good As Any". Evocative stories that reflect the austere beauty of their settings, the rural landscapes of New England and Texas. The protagonists are all male and have somehow been pushed to the margins, by illness, lack of love or both. Most of the characters must face a physical disability or illness, but the physical problems are really manifestations of emotional distress, the result of intense loneliness, and the craving for connection. This may sound painful and even depressing. In fact, it makes this collection one of the most powerful debuts of the year. An absolute "must-have" title for Timothy A. Westmoreland collectors. This copy is very prominently, elaborately, and beautifully signed in black pen on the title page by Timothy A. Westmoreland. It is signed directly on the page itself, not on a tipped-in page. He also crossed out his printed name with two wave-like strokes. This title is now collectible. This is one of very few such signed copies of the First Hardcover Edition/First Printing still available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a beauty. A scarce signed copy thus. One of the most brilliant new voices in American literature. A fine copy. ISBN 0151008523. Bookseller Inventory # 10344
Synopsis: From a new voice in American fiction come tales of men whose language is grief, whose off-center lives expose the difficulty of being whole in a world they cannot understand.
Set in the spare, unforgiving landscapes of rural New England and rural Texas, Timothy Westmoreland's stories explore the reality of life among the ill and the dying, the disadvantaged and those unfit for life except in the margins. They examine the individual moment, those times when people create fiction in their lives just to survive, soothing the ache that permeates their being. Dark and funny, these stories tell wrenching truths about being men and being whole. Reminiscent of the work of Russell Banks, they announce a major new writer of immense talent.
Review: Afflicted and flawed, the male protagonists--blue collar but well read--of Timothy A. Westmoreland's impressive debut collection, Good as Any, all suffer quietly their own degenerative or chronic ailments, which parallel or are seemingly a manifestation of their emotional shortcomings and loneliness. Hope, here, is not an option. Westmoreland's prose is sparse and exacting, with promising insights. In these stories, a man "walked into novels as if they were rooms in his own home," and "[a] fish is like a good idea. You have to know what to do with it or it's wasted." With each story involving illness and dying, Westmoreland notes that "[e]veryone learns in time, when it comes to illness, that compromise is really only a process of letting go."
The most powerful work is "They Have Numbered All My Bones," in which a man, hovering in the gray area near consciousness following a car accident, recalls his one, true love long ago; nearly as impressive is the title story, which depicts a tired relationship ended when a man adopts a terminally ill dog and gives himself over to his pet at his girlfriend's expense. Despite the fact that most stories end on a rather unresolved note, there is a compassion and earnestness throughout the book that, while it may be somewhat depressing for some, forces introspection over difficult terrain. Good as Any is an important new collection. --Michael Ferch
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