Dorothy Allison

Dorothy Allison describes herself as a feminist, a working-class story teller, a Southern expatriate, a sometime poet and a happily born-again Californian. Awarded the 2007 Robert Penn Warren Award for Fiction, Allison is a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers. Allison's short story collection, Trash (1988) was published by Firebrand Books. Trash won two Lambda Literary Awards and the American Library Association Prize for Lesbian and Gay Writing. Allison's novel Bastard Out of Carolina, (1992) was a finalist for the 1992 National Book Award. The novel won the Ferro Grumley prize, an ALA Award for Lesbian and Gay Writing, became a best seller, and an award-winning movie. Cavedweller (1998) became a national bestseller, New York Times Notable book of the year, finalist for the Lillian Smith prize, and an ALA prizewinner.
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A profound portrait of family dynamics in the rural South and “an essential novel” (The New Yorker)
 
“As close to flawless as any reader could ask for . . . The living language [Allison] has created is as exact and innovative as the language of To Kill a Mockingbird and The Catcher in the Rye.” —The New York Times Book Review

The publication of Dorothy Allison’s Bastard Out of Carolina was a landmark event that won the author a National Book Award nomination and launched her into the literary spotlight. Critics have likened Allison to Harper Lee, naming her the first writer of her generation to dramatize the lives and language of poor whites in the South. Since its appearance, the novel has inspired an award-winning film and has been banned from libraries and classrooms, championed by fans, and defended by critics.
 
Greenville County, South Carolina, is a wild, lush place that is home to the Boatwright family—a tight-knit clan of rough-hewn, hard-drinking men who shoot up each other’s trucks, and indomitable women who get married young and age too quickly. At the heart of this story is Ruth Anne Boatwright, known simply as Bone, a bastard child who observes the world around her with a mercilessly keen perspective. When her stepfather Daddy Glen, “cold as death, mean as a snake,” becomes increasingly more vicious toward her, Bone finds herself caught in a family triangle that tests the loyalty of her mother, Anney—and leads to a final, harrowing encounter from which there can be no turning back.

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