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Jackson Street & Other Soldier Stories

Miller, John A.

8 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0964294931 / ISBN 13: 9780964294936
Published by Orloff Press, 1995
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Berkeley. 1995. Orloff Press. 1st Edition. Very Good In Slightly Worn Dustjacket. 60. 169 pages. hardcover. Jacket illustration by Pablo Haz. Signed by The Author. 0964294931. keywords:. inventory # 25430. FROM THE PUBLISHER - For many young men and women in rural America, the armed services have long represented a ticket to a wider world. The eleven stories in John A. Miller's extraordinary debut illuminate the irony that lurks behind that tradition: there is no escaping a soldier's life. With a clear voice and stark power, Miller draws us into the unexplored lives of these soldiers - and their lovers, acquaintances, and kin - revealing the often unexpected consequences of military service. Richly evocative and quietly devastating, these stories chronicle a world both haunted by sadness, and sustained by hope. Very Good In Slightly Worn Dustjacket. Bookseller Inventory # 25430

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Jackson Street & Other Soldier Stories

Publisher: Orloff Press

Publication Date: 1995

Binding: hardcover

Edition: 1st Edition.

About this title


For many young men and women in rural America, the armed services have long represented a ticket to a wider world. The 11 stories in this critically acclaimed collection illuminate the irony behind that thinking.

From Publishers Weekly:

"Mary Alice Goodman taught piano and lived on Jackson Streeet, in a house that surely cried at night" begins the title story of this impressive first collection. That sentence portends some of the qualities that distinguish these 11 tales: the assured unfolding of the lives of quietly desperate people, somewhat vitiated by the author's tendency to strain at metaphors and a few instances of clumsy construction. In the main, however, Miller distinguishes himself here, and three or four of the stories are outstandingly good. Mass murder, terminal illness, abortion and suicide occur in these narratives, but a theme linking them is the psychological and physical costs of war. Indeed, the shadow of Vietnam lies over most of the tales, infusing them with an aching sadness and regret. "Guns" also refers to the slang word for biceps in Venice Beach, Calif., where the protagonist, a lonely, rootless discharged 30-year veteran, has come to die, his passage unexpectedly eased by the kindness of strangers. The legacy of Vietnam also infuses "The Rifle," a strong, tense narrative in which a young lieutenant, befriended by the parents of the dead soldier whose coffin he has brought home to the Pacific Northwest, suddenly is overcome by the tragedy he has been trying to avoid thinking about. In the main, however, the settings are seedy small towns in the rural Carolinas and Virgina. Blackstone, the eponymous community in the poignant story of that name, is "so poor that it had no stone memorial honoring its Confederate dead." The ex-GIs have returned disillusioned about their pasts and chances in life, without the capacity for love or the remnants of morals. And the love-starved women characters indulge in promiscuous behavior with a desperate abandon. Miller's bleak landscapes and haunted characters make memorable reading. Author tour.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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