Synopses & Reviews
Barry Hannah was widely recognized as one of the masters of the American short story and his death in March 2010 brought writers and readers out of the woodwork to mourn an irrevocable loss to American letters. Now, combining the best of the four story collections he published during his lifetime and the final manuscript he left behind, Long, Last, Happy
will cement his legacy and serve as the definitive collection of his finest work in the story form.
From his first collection, Airships, Barry Hannah made the literary world sit up and take notice. His ferocious, glittering prose and sui generis worldview introduced readers to a literary New South — a fictional landscape that Vanity Fair Daily has summarized as covering "Women, God, lust, race, nature, gay Confederates, good old boys, bad old boys, guns, animals, fishing, fighting, cars, pestilence, surrealism, gritty realism, the future, and the past...tossed together in glorious juxtapositions."
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution called Hannah "the mendacity-battling colossus bestriding the cotton-growing, Wal-Mart-shopping, history-haunted states the rest of the country calls 'down there.'" The definitive collection of a giant of the American short story, and including never-seen new material, Long, Last, Happy confirms that Barry Hannah was one of the most brilliant voices of our time.
"This posthumous collection includes four new stories and shows why Hannah's regarded as one of the best. Hannah's wit is caustic, shot through with social commentary and gleefully interspersed with bursts of slapstick comedy. One of his best-known early stories, 'Mother Rooney Unscrolls the Hurt,' still holds up more than 30 years later, with the landlady in her dilapidated house, lying crumpled at the bottom of the stairs. Hannah easily links themes, characters, and places--particularly his longtime home of Oxford, Miss., and its flagship school, Ole Miss--without drawing unnecessary attention to connections. The new stories--'Fire Water,' 'Sick Soldier at Your Door,' 'Lastward, Deputy James,' and 'Out-tell the Teller'--can be read as a set of interlocking narratives, each presenting a different angle on a series of arson attacks on small churches. The subject matter may be serious, but Hannah never abandons his sly grin--just as he was able to shift, mid-story, between boyhood hijinks and the looming threat of Vietnam in 'Testimony of Pilot.' This collection reminds that Hannah, even in death, will always be 'on the black and chrome Triumph, riding right into your face.' (Dec.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)
Called the best fiction writer to appear in the South since Flannery O'Connor (Larry McMurtry), acclaimed author Hannah (Airships, Bats Out of Hell) returns with an all-new collection of short stories.
A career-spanning collection from the beloved master of the short story and the Southern Gothic idiom, Long, Last, Happy is a fitting tribute to a writer deeply mourned by the literary community.