The Violent Bear It Away: A Novel

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First published in 1955, The Violent Bear It Away is now a landmark in American literature. It is a dark and absorbing example of the Gothic sensibility and bracing satirical voice that are united in Flannery O'Conner's work. In it, the orphaned Francis Marion Tarwater and his cousins, the schoolteacher Rayber, defy the prophecy of their dead uncle--that Tarwater will become a prophet and will baptize Rayber's young son, Bishop. A series of struggles ensues: Tarwater fights an internal battle against his innate faith and the voices calling him to be a prophet while Rayber tries to draw Tarwater into a more "reasonable" modern world. Both wrestle with the legacy of their dead relatives and lay claim to Bishop's soul.

O'Connor observes all this with an astonishing combination of irony and compassion, humor and pathos. The result is a novel whose range and depth reveal a brilliant and innovative writers acutely alert to where the sacred lives and to where it does not.

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About the author

Flannery O'Connor (1925-1964) was one of America’s most gifted writers. She wrote two novels, Wise Blood and The Violent Bear It Away, and two story collections, A Good Man Is Hard to Find and Everything That Rises Must Converge. Her Complete Stories, published posthumously in 1972, won the National Book Award that year, and in a 2009 online poll it was voted as the best book to have won the award in the contest's 60-year history. Her essays were published in Mystery and Manners and her letters in The Habit of Being.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
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Published on
Jun 12, 2007
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Pages
256
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ISBN
9781466829053
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Literary
Fiction / Southern
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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One of Slate's and Kirkus Review's Best Books of 2013 and The New York Times, National Public Radio, and Indie Bound bestseller: "Lookaway, Lookaway is a wild romp through the South, and therefore the history of our nation, written by an absolute ringmaster of fiction." —Alice Sebold, New York Times bestselling author of The Lovely Bones

Jerene Jarvis Johnston and her husband Duke are exemplars of Charlotte, North Carolina's high society, where old Southern money—and older Southern secrets—meet the new wealth of bankers, boom-era speculators, and carpetbagging social climbers. Steely and implacable, Jerene presides over her family's legacy of paintings at the Mint Museum; Duke, the one-time college golden boy and descendant of a Confederate general, whose promising political career was mysteriously short-circuited, has settled into a comfortable semi-senescence as a Civil War re-enactor. Jerene's brother Gaston is an infamously dissolute bestselling historical novelist who has never managed to begin his long-dreamed-of literary masterpiece, while their sister Dillard is a prisoner of unfortunate life decisions that have made her a near-recluse.

As the four Johnston children wander perpetually toward scandal and mishap. Annie, the smart but matrimonially reckless real estate maven; Bo, a minister at war with his congregation; Joshua, prone to a series of gay misadventures, and Jerilyn, damaged but dutiful to her expected role as debutante and eventual society bride. Jerene must prove tireless in preserving the family's legacy, Duke's fragile honor, and what's left of the dwindling family fortune. She will stop at nothing to keep what she has—but is it too much to ask for one ounce of cooperation from her heedless family?

In Lookaway, Lookaway, Wilton Barnhardt has written a headlong, hilarious narrative of a family coming apart, a society changing beyond recognition, and an unforgettable woman striving to pull it all together.

A Kirkus Reviews Best Fiction Book of 2013

Blueprints for a Barbed-Wire Canoe, Wayne Macauley's first novel, is a bitingly dark take on the great Australian dream. Fable-like, effortlessly readable and ultimately moving, it shows us the depth of Macauley's talent.

Bram and his fellow residents are drawn by a dream: the promise of a freeway leading to a new suburb north of the city. The houses are built, but the freeway never comes. One by one, the dreamers leave, until only a small, hardcore group is left, including Bram, One-eyed Michael, and Michael's self-possessed daughter Jodie. As the disused houses crumble around them they barricade themselves in. They have a gun, a bulldozer, and a hellbent determination to stay till the end, whatever, whenever, that is. But the authorities have other ideas.

Wayne Macauley is a Melbourne writer. He is the author of three highly acclaimed novels, Blueprints for a Barbed-Wire Canoe, Caravan Story and The Cook.

'Wayne Macauley has the soul of a poet and his surreal novella is stunningly written...It is a satire of exquisite poise and confidence...If more Australian literature was of this calibre, we'd be laughing.' Age

'[It was] like falling into a bale of barbed wire in the dark and fighting to get out till morning. The more I struggled, the more it got under my skin.' Bulletin

'A salutary fable about the horrors awaiting our disaffected modern citizenry...lasting visual images and resonant symbolism.' Sydney Morning Herald

'Bewitching...ethereal...hallucinatory...In an era when many Australian novelists are playing it safe...Wayne Macauley is an ambitious talent worth watching.' Wet Ink

'Tapping the hidden heart of a different Australia...this is original Australian writing at its best.' Courier Mail

Shortlisted, WA Premier's Book Awards, 2011
Shortlisted, Victorian Premier's Book Awards, 2012
Shortlisted, Melbourne Prize for Literature, Best Writing Award, 2012

The Cook, Wayne Macauley's breakout novel, is funny and sad, strange and satirical, and weirdly moving.

At Cook School, Zac dreams about becoming the greatest chef the world has seen. 'You have been chosen, says Head Chef. Of all the young people wasting their lives you and you only have been chosen.'

Zac thinks he’s on his way when he gets a job as house cook for a wealthy family - the Mistress and Master and their daughters, Melody and Jade.

But when things start to fall apart, Zac knows he must take control.

Wayne Macauley is a Melbourne writer. He has published two novels, Blueprints for a Barbed-Wire Canoe (2004) and Caravan Story (2007). His short-fiction collection, Other Stories, was released in 2010.

'A riot of a book! Gripping and subversive...' Nick Cave

'Irresistible - The Cook reminds us just how exciting it is to read a wonderful and original novel.' Lloyd Jones

'Blackly funny and deliciously satirical, this book skewers our culture of food worship while feeding our curiosity about kitchens.' Age Magazine

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The landscape of American literature was fundamentally changed when Flannery O'Connor stepped onto the scene with her first published book, Wise Blood, in 1952. Her fierce, sometimes comic novels and stories reflected the darkly funny, vibrant, and theologically sophisticated woman who wrote them. Brad Gooch brings to life O'Connor's significant friendships--with Robert Lowell, Elizabeth Hardwick, Walker Percy, and James Dickey among others--and her deeply felt convictions, as expressed in her communications with Thomas Merton, Elizabeth Bishop, and Betty Hester. Hester was famously known as "A" in O'Connor's collected letters, The Habit of Being, and a large cache of correspondence to her from O'Connor was made available to scholars, including Brad Gooch, in 2006. O'Connor's capacity to live fully--despite the chronic disease that eventually confined her to her mother's farm in Georgia--is illuminated in this engaging and authoritative biography.

PRAISE FOR FLANNERY

"Flannery O'Connor, one of the best American writers of short fiction, has found her ideal biographer in Brad Gooch. With elegance and fairness, Gooch deals with the sensitive areas of race and religion in O'Connor's life. He also takes us back to those heady days after the war when O'Connor studied creative writing at Iowa. There is much that is new in this book, but, more important, everything is presented in a strong, clear light." --Edmund White

"This splendid biography gives us no saint or martyr but the story of a gifted and complicated woman, bent on making the best of the difficult hand fate has dealt her, whether it is with grit and humor or with an abiding desire to make palpable to readers the terrible mystery of God's grace." --Frances Kiernan, author of Seeing Mary Plain: A Life of Mary McCarthy

"A good biographer is hard to find. Brad Gooch is not merely good-he is extraordinary. Blessed with the eye and ear of a novelist, he has composed the life that admirers of the fierce and hilarious Georgia genius have long been hoping for." -- Joel Conarroe, President Emeritus, John Simon Guggenheim Foundation
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