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Gautreaux, Tim.

ISBN 10: 031220308X / ISBN 13: 9780312203085
Published by PICADOR USA. NY 1999, 1999
Condition: Fine Hardcover
From WAVERLEY BOOKS ABAA (Santa Monica, CA, U.S.A.)

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REVIEW COPY. (2pp. of publicity material laid-in) Fine in a fine dj. Stories. (B). Bookseller Inventory # 9570

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Bibliographic Details


Publisher: PICADOR USA. NY 1999

Publication Date: 1999

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Edition: First Edition.

About this title


A master storyteller's triumphant, moving collection about lost souls, found love, and rediscovered tradition<br /><br />Tim Gautreaux returns to the form that won him his first fans, with tales of family, sin, and redemption: from a man who realizes his grandchildren are growing up without any sense of right or wrong, and he's to blame; to a camera repairman who uncovers a young woman's secret in the undeveloped film she brings him; to a one-armed hitch-hiker who changes the life of the man who gives her a ride.<br /><br />Each one a small miracle of storytelling and compassion, these stories are a joyous confirmation of Tim Gautreaux's rare and generous talent.<br />


In Tim Gautreaux's pitch-perfect portraits of rural Louisiana life, there is no force stronger than a good Cajun-style chicken stew--except, perhaps, the vagaries of old age. <i>Welding with Children</i> has more than its fair share of the latter, beginning with the funny and moving title story, in which a grandfather drives around the four offspring of his four single daughters using what neighbors unkindly call &quot;the bastardmobile.&quot; Raised on a steady diet of Icees and daytime talk TV, Bruton's grandkids finally inspire a housecleaning of truly spiritual dimensions, proving the adage that &quot;everything worth doing hurts like hell.&quot; Other stories follow a hard-drinking priest sent on a strange errand of automotive atonement, a manic-depressive Creole princess playing cocktail piano in a motel lounge, and a one-armed feminist hitchhiker on a quest for academic tenure: <blockquote> When a search committee member told me they'd received an application from a gay black female double amputee from Ghana, I reminded the committee that part of my childhood was spent in Mexico, and then I played my last card and came out as a lesbian.... But it did no good. The college found someone more specialized, foreign, and incomplete than I could ever be. </blockquote> Fair enough. But while most of these tales rely on a certain tried-and-true Southern eccentricity to work their magic, two stories point to what Gautreaux can do when he seeks to do more than just charm. In &quot;Sorry Blood,&quot; another old man loses his way--mentally and physically--in a Wal-Mart parking lot. An opportunistic con man poses as his son, then puts the kidnapped &quot;Ted Williams&quot; to work digging a ditch in the sun. Scary, yes, but not as scary as the old man's struggle to hold on to his memory: &quot;This is an egg. What am I?&quot; In the brief and powerful &quot;Rodeo Parole,&quot; four inmates play a dangerous waiting game with an enraged bull, spurred on by the knowledge that a rodeo victory means scoring points with the parole board. The bull, after all, is no more or less than their fates, &quot;like a judge saying something and you can't stop it or change it.&quot; Gracefully written and spiced with vivid regional detail, these are tales by a master storyteller who's not afraid to blend some darkness into his fictional roux. <i>--Mary Park</i>

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