Synopses & Reviews
These interlocking stories begin with foundation tales of the migration of JJ, his wife Naomi, and their son Otis from their chaotic family beginnings in Tulsa, Oklahoma, to their settlement in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in the 1920s. Stories in the second section treat Otis's coming of age amid the shifting fortunes of his family and friends. The third section considers events ranging from whimsical to tragic that occur in other peoples' lives in the same place and time. Gish recalls a world where although the workings of Providence are hard to fathom and their outcome is often hard to bear, we must accept them because our very lives are built upon them. From the Tulsa race riots of 1921 to Buck's last coon hunt, the reader is never left in a completely comfortable place, though one may see "after the fact" a rough justice at work.
Fiction. These interlocking stories cover the migration of JJ, his wife Naomi, and their son Otis from their family beginnings in Tulsa to their settlement in Albuquerque; Otis' coming of age amid the shifting fortunes of his family and friends; and events in other peoples' lives at the same place and time. Gish creates a world where the workings of Providence are hard to fathom and their outcome often hard to bear, though we must accept them because our lives are built upon them. From the Tulsa race riots of 1921 to Buck's last coon hunt, the reader never finds a place to rest, though rough justice is always at work. "These are authentic and poignant blues whose melodies will play in your mind long after the book is finished"--John Nichols.
A series of related stories about the westward migration of one American family and the shifting fortunes of their lives and others in later years.
About the Author
Robert F. Gish is the author of over a dozen works of fiction and memoir, folktales, and literary biographies and essays. His story collections include Bad Boys and Black Sheep (1996), Dreams of Quivira (1996), and First Horses: Stories of the New West (1993); he also has written a memoir of growing up in the west, Songs of My Hunter Heart (1992). He taught at the University of Northern Iowa from 1967-91 and served as director of ethnic studies and professor of English at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo from 1991 to 2001. Of Cherokee-Anglo American descent, Gish lives with his wife Judith in Albuquerque, New Mexico.