Here, in a letter of her own, Lee Smith explains how she was inspired to write this celebrated epistolary novel:
Like me, you probably get Christmas letters every year. I read every word and save every letter. Because every Christmas letter is the story of a life, and what story can be more interesting than the story of our lives? Often, it is the story of an entire family. But you also have to read between the lines with Christmas letters. Sometimes, what is not said is even more important than what is on the page.
In The Christmas Letters, I have used this familiar format to illumine the lives, hopes, dreams, and disappointments of three generations of American women. Much of the story of The Christmas Letters is also told through shared recipes. As Mary, my favorite character, says, "I feel as if I have written out my life story in recipes! The Cool Whip and mushroom soup years, the hibachi and fondue period, then the quiche and crepes phase, and now it's these salsa years."
I wrote this little book for the same reason I write to my friends and relatives every holiday--Christmas letters give us a chance to remember and celebrate who we are.
With warmest greetings, Lee Smith
Born in the small coal-mining town of Grundy, Virginia, Lee Smith began writing stories at the age of nine and selling them for a nickel apiece. Since then, she has written seventeen works of fiction, including Fair and Tender Ladies, Oral History, and, most recently, Guests on Earth. She has received many awards, including the North Carolina Award for Literature and an Academy Award in Fiction from the American Academy of Arts and Letters; her novel The Last Girls was a New York Times bestseller as well as winner of the Southern Book Critics Circle Award. She lives in Hillsborough, North Carolina, with her husband, the writer Hal Crowther. Visit her at www.leesmith.com.
Neil Gaiman, long inspired by ancient mythology in creating the fantastical realms of his fiction, presents a bravura rendition of the Norse gods and their world from their origin though their upheaval in Ragnarok.
In Norse Mythology, Gaiman stays true to the myths in envisioning the major Norse pantheon: Odin, the highest of the high, wise, daring, and cunning; Thor, Odin’s son, incredibly strong yet not the wisest of gods; and Loki—son of a giant—blood brother to Odin and a trickster and unsurpassable manipulator.
Gaiman fashions these primeval stories into a novelistic arc that begins with the genesis of the legendary nine worlds and delves into the exploits of deities, dwarfs, and giants. Through Gaiman’s deft and witty prose, these gods emerge with their fiercely competitive natures, their susceptibility to being duped and to duping others, and their tendency to let passion ignite their actions, making these long-ago myths breathe pungent life again.
stand out in job applications;
use social media for job searching;
create resumes and cover letters that stand out;
succeed at interviews.
It provides a practical, hands on, step-by-step approach. With an integrated Personal Plan that helps create key job search documents it directs soon-to-be graduates towards achieving their career aspirations. Accompanying online resources include examples and templates, which can be downloaded in Word format to help you prepare resumes and other job search documents.
This book will help graduates progressively build up job-hunting resources – skills, achievements, resume, cover letter and interview responses – and turn this into a practical outcome: a new job. It is a key companion to any student or recent graduate exploring the job market.
In Forgotten Heroes, he shares his life storyfrom his birth in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; to growing up in North Carolina during the Great Depression under the oppressive Jim Crow laws that pervaded the South; to his relatively happy teen years during World War II; to the bloody combat in Korea during the countero ensive of 1951; to joining the National Guard and working his way up to lieutenant colonel.
As an African American of advanced age, Smith shares how he lived through Jim Crow, the Ku Klux Klan, war, the civil rights movement, economic booms and busts, the birth of rock n roll, the free love and drugs of the 1960s, the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., the womens liberation movement, the tech bubble, and the Great Recession.