The Weight of This World

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Critically acclaimed author David Joy, whose debut, Where All Light Tends to Go, was hailed as “a savagely moving novel that will likely become an important addition to the great body of Southern literature” (The Huffington Post), returns to the mountains of North Carolina with a powerful story about the inescapable weight of the past.

A combat veteran returned from war, Thad Broom can’t leave the hardened world of Afghanistan behind, nor can he forgive himself for what he saw there. His mother, April, is haunted by her own demons, a secret trauma she has carried for years. Between them is Aiden McCall, loyal to both but unable to hold them together. Connected by bonds of circumstance and duty, friendship and love, these three lives are blown apart when Aiden and Thad witness the accidental death of their drug dealer and a riot of dope and cash drops in their laps. On a meth-fueled journey to nowhere, they will either find the grit to overcome the darkness or be consumed by it.


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About the author

David Joy’s first novel, Where All Light Tends to Go, debuted to great acclaim and was named an Edgar finalist for Best First Novel. His stories and creative nonfiction have appeared in Drafthorse, Smoky Mountain Living, Wilderness House Literary Review, Pisgah Review, and Flycatcher, and he is the author of the memoir Growing Gills: A Fly Fisherman’s Journey. Joy lives in Webster, North Carolina.


From the Hardcover edition.
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4.3
12 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Penguin
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Published on
Mar 7, 2017
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Pages
272
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ISBN
9780698184404
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Crime
Fiction / Literary
Fiction / Noir
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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A Finalist for the Edgar Award for Best First Novel

“Remarkable . . . This isn’t your ordinary coming-of-age novel, but with his bone-cutting insights into these men and the region that bred them, Joy makes it an extraordinarily intimate experience.”—Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times Book Review

"Lyrical, propulsive, dark and compelling. Joy knows well the grit and gravel of his world, the soul and blemishes of the place."--Daniel Woodrell

In the country-noir tradition of Winter's Bone meets 'Breaking Bad,' a savage and beautiful story of a young man seeking redemption.

The area surrounding Cashiers, North Carolina, is home to people of all kinds, but the world that Jacob McNeely lives in is crueler than most. His father runs a methodically organized meth ring, with local authorities on the dime to turn a blind eye to his dealings. Having dropped out of high school and cut himself off from his peers, Jacob has been working for this father for years, all on the promise that his payday will come eventually.  The only joy he finds comes from reuniting with Maggie, his first love, and a girl clearly bound for bigger and better things than their hardscrabble town.

Jacob has always been resigned to play the cards that were dealt him, but when a fatal mistake changes everything, he’s faced with a choice: stay and appease his father, or leave the mountains with the girl he loves. In a place where blood is thicker than water and hope takes a back seat to fate, Jacob wonders if he can muster the strength to rise above the only life he’s ever known.


From the Hardcover edition.
A dark, riveting, beautifully written book—by “a brilliant novelist,” according to Richard Bausch—that combines noir and the gothic in a story about two families entwined in their own unhappiness, with, at its heart, a gruesome and unsolved murder
 
Late one winter afternoon in upstate New York, George Clare comes home to find his wife killed and their three-year-old daughter alone—for how many hours?—in her room across the hall. He had recently, begrudgingly, taken a position at a nearby private college (far too expensive for local kids to attend) teaching art history, and moved his family into a tight-knit, impoverished town that has lately been discovered by wealthy outsiders in search of a rural idyll. 

George is of course the immediate suspect—the question of his guilt echoing in a story shot through with secrets both personal and professional. While his parents rescue him from suspicion, a persistent cop is stymied at every turn in proving Clare a heartless murderer. And three teenage brothers (orphaned by tragic circumstances) find themselves entangled in this mystery, not least because the Clares had moved into their childhood home, a once-thriving dairy farm. The pall of death is ongoing, and relentless; behind one crime there are others, and more than twenty years will pass before a hard kind of justice is finally served. 

A rich and complex portrait of a psychopath and a marriage, this is also an astute study of the various taints that can scar very different families, and even an entire community. Elizabeth Brundage is an essential talent who has given us a true modern classic.


From the Hardcover edition.
This book offers a fresh appraisal of the identity and involvement of the subalterns in Mark, arguing that the presence of the subalterns in Mark is a possible hermeneutical tool for re-reading the Bible in a postcolonial context like India. Part I paves the way for a creative discussion on Mark and its interpreters in the rest of the study by looking at the issue of the spread of Christianity and missionary attempts at biblical interpretations that did not take the life of the natives into account. Many insights from the postcolonial situation can be found in the contextual interpretations such as liberation, feminist, postcolonial feminist and subaltern. Part II considers colonial rule in Palestine and examines some Markan texts showing the potential role of the subalterns. It is argued that due to colonial rule, the native people suffered in terms of their identity, religion and culture. There was conflict between Galilee and Jerusalem mainly on religious issues and the victims of domination were the poor peasants and the artisans in Galilee. A dialogue and interaction with the Markan milieu was possible in the research and so the marginal and subaltern groups were effectively understood by exegeting Mark 10:17-31, 7:24-30 and 5:1-20 and showing the postcolonial issues such as the poor and their representation, gender, race, hybridity, class, nationalism, and purity respectively. The subalterns were mainly associated with movements of resistance in Palestine. The Markan proclamation of solidarity with those subalterns is significant. The general conclusion presents the implications of this interpretation for a hermeneutical paradigm for a postcolonial context.
A Finalist for the Edgar Award for Best First Novel

“Remarkable . . . This isn’t your ordinary coming-of-age novel, but with his bone-cutting insights into these men and the region that bred them, Joy makes it an extraordinarily intimate experience.”—Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times Book Review

"Lyrical, propulsive, dark and compelling. Joy knows well the grit and gravel of his world, the soul and blemishes of the place."--Daniel Woodrell

In the country-noir tradition of Winter's Bone meets 'Breaking Bad,' a savage and beautiful story of a young man seeking redemption.

The area surrounding Cashiers, North Carolina, is home to people of all kinds, but the world that Jacob McNeely lives in is crueler than most. His father runs a methodically organized meth ring, with local authorities on the dime to turn a blind eye to his dealings. Having dropped out of high school and cut himself off from his peers, Jacob has been working for this father for years, all on the promise that his payday will come eventually.  The only joy he finds comes from reuniting with Maggie, his first love, and a girl clearly bound for bigger and better things than their hardscrabble town.

Jacob has always been resigned to play the cards that were dealt him, but when a fatal mistake changes everything, he’s faced with a choice: stay and appease his father, or leave the mountains with the girl he loves. In a place where blood is thicker than water and hope takes a back seat to fate, Jacob wonders if he can muster the strength to rise above the only life he’s ever known.


From the Hardcover edition.
This book offers a fresh appraisal of the identity and involvement of the subalterns in Mark, arguing that the presence of the subalterns in Mark is a possible hermeneutical tool for re-reading the Bible in a postcolonial context like India. Part I paves the way for a creative discussion on Mark and its interpreters in the rest of the study by looking at the issue of the spread of Christianity and missionary attempts at biblical interpretations that did not take the life of the natives into account. Many insights from the postcolonial situation can be found in the contextual interpretations such as liberation, feminist, postcolonial feminist and subaltern. Part II considers colonial rule in Palestine and examines some Markan texts showing the potential role of the subalterns. It is argued that due to colonial rule, the native people suffered in terms of their identity, religion and culture. There was conflict between Galilee and Jerusalem mainly on religious issues and the victims of domination were the poor peasants and the artisans in Galilee. A dialogue and interaction with the Markan milieu was possible in the research and so the marginal and subaltern groups were effectively understood by exegeting Mark 10:17-31, 7:24-30 and 5:1-20 and showing the postcolonial issues such as the poor and their representation, gender, race, hybridity, class, nationalism, and purity respectively. The subalterns were mainly associated with movements of resistance in Palestine. The Markan proclamation of solidarity with those subalterns is significant. The general conclusion presents the implications of this interpretation for a hermeneutical paradigm for a postcolonial context.
This book offers a fresh appraisal of the identity and involvement of the subalterns in Mark, arguing that the presence of the subalterns in Mark is a possible hermeneutical tool for re-reading the Bible in a postcolonial context like India. Part I paves the way for a creative discussion on Mark and its interpreters in the rest of the study by looking at the issue of the spread of Christianity and missionary attempts at biblical interpretations that did not take the life of the natives into account. Many insights from the postcolonial situation can be found in the contextual interpretations such as liberation, feminist, postcolonial feminist and subaltern. Part II considers colonial rule in Palestine and examines some Markan texts showing the potential role of the subalterns. It is argued that due to colonial rule, the native people suffered in terms of their identity, religion and culture. There was conflict between Galilee and Jerusalem mainly on religious issues and the victims of domination were the poor peasants and the artisans in Galilee. A dialogue and interaction with the Markan milieu was possible in the research and so the marginal and subaltern groups were effectively understood by exegeting Mark 10:17-31, 7:24-30 and 5:1-20 and showing the postcolonial issues such as the poor and their representation, gender, race, hybridity, class, nationalism, and purity respectively. The subalterns were mainly associated with movements of resistance in Palestine. The Markan proclamation of solidarity with those subalterns is significant. The general conclusion presents the implications of this interpretation for a hermeneutical paradigm for a postcolonial context.
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