Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Woodrell's first book is first book of 2013

1. Under the Bright Lights, Daniel Woodrell

My first book in 2013 is Daniel Woodrell's first book, Under the Bright Lights, published by Henry Holt in 1986.

Under the Bright Lights reads exactly like a first book. The author struggles with pacing and it's wordy. In his later books, the pacing is brisk as Woodrell seizes control of the narrative rhythm and smoothes the way for the reader by eliminating unneeded verbiage.

Yet the promise realized in Give Us A Kiss, The Death of Sweet Mister or Winter's Bone can be found here.

"She was a country girl with just one real talent, but it was one that travels well and is appreciated around the world."

That's a sentence worth reading again.

I am also delving into The Patriarch, David Nasaw's biography of Joe Kennedy;  Married Love, a story collection by Tessa Hadley; and The Best American Short Stories of 2012.

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