The Junk-Drawer Corner-Store Front-Porch Blues

Powers, John R.

Published by Dutton Adult, 1992
ISBN 10: 0525934057 / ISBN 13: 9780525934059
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Synopsis: Donald Cooper returns home after twenty years to purge the adolescent memories from which he left town to escape, in a compelling story that summons up the intimate and innocent family life of the 1950s. 25,000 first printing. National ad/promo.

From Kirkus Reviews: Powers's fourth novel (Do Black Patent Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up?, 1975, is his best known) is a 1950's coming-of-age saga about a boy who loses his brother in an accident. Its bittersweet nostalgia is amiably comic most of the way through. Donald Cooper returns to the neighborhood where he grew up--on the South Side of Chicago--when his mother, a widow, breaks her hip. The narrative then seesaws between the present and the past that comes to haunt Donald. His mother was a housewife and his father drove a delivery truck at a time when the nuclear family was celebrated not for its dysfunctions but for its wholesome American flavor. And Donald, who in the present is recovering from lung- cancer surgery, remembers it mostly that way: brother Danny playing the trumpet, lemonade on the front porch, trips to the corner store, the crosstown rivalry between the White Sox and the Cubs. The story jump-cuts between years and instances, between Donald and Danny, between the usual crises and illnesses of childhood, providing nostalgia by way of 16-inch softball (``Many a Chicagoan has spent virtually every warm evening hour of his life playing sixteen-inch softball'') and high jinks by way of puberty (``About every ten minutes I'd have this urge to gangbang Europe'') and a mother who ``goes through the motions of tucking us in,'' no matter how old the boys became. Finally, however, after a series of instances involving the family car, Danny borrows it one night and is killed in a car wreck, whereupon the story turns suitably melancholy before finishing with an aching description of autumn and a relatively upbeat ending. Portions of the novel were originally presented in a one-man show. While the prose style is not particularly distinguished, the material has enough psychic weight and nuclear-family ambiance to deserve attention. -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Title: The Junk-Drawer Corner-Store Front-Porch ...
Publisher: Dutton Adult
Publication Date: 1992
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Used: Good

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Powers, John R.
Published by Dutton Adult (1992)
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Powers, John R.
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