A luminous quartet, five years in the writing, reveals even more fully the breathtaking range of "a storyteller in the grand tradition" ( New York Times ).
Allan Gurganus's voice--by turn bawdy and serene, folkloric and profane--deepens as it soars into this quiet masterwork. Four new fables--rich in event, comedy, experience--surge with the force of history's headlines versus sidestreet human fortitude. Improbable heroes and heroines spiral outward from Gurganus's familiar Carolina terrain. Each fires into a wild and differing direction, all in quest of some fantasy that's practically impossible:
--An impoverished immigrant has her portrait painted (or not) by John Singer Sargent.
--A young man's devotion to saving eighteenth-century homes—and their odd lingering ghosts—helps him find unlikely ways to renovate his own mortality.
--A pillar of the community becomes, over the course of one cartoon matinee, its pariah.
--A beloved, transfixingly homely father shows his village and his only son a decency stronger than race,
humiliation, or even death itself.
These characters' quixotic missions prove mysterious, often even to themselves. Their legacies are not easily deciphered. And yet, their most impractical wishes soon become the heartiest facts about each. They manage to wrest battle-courage from everyday indecision. Out of superstition and convention, they lift certainty. They each find a wealth of consoling truths banked--immortal--in the all-too-human heart.
Allan Gurganus's great powers--announced more than a decade ago by Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All --here achieve a yearning exuberance worthy of a new Whitman. These leaps of sexual longing, empathy, and faith become a major new gift from this essential fablemaker.
From the Hardcover edition.
Share your thoughts on the The Practical Heart General Fiction eBook with others!
|Title of eBook: The Practical Heart|
|Release Date: 09-01-2010|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
This eBook download is available in the following formats:
|Parent title||The Practical Heart|
|Devices||Samsung Tablet, Apple Ipad & Iphone, Barnes & Noble Nook, Kobo eReader, Aluratek Libre, Iliad, Nokia, Blackberry, Hanlin|
|Note||ePub, short for electronic publication is one of our favorites and should be yours for a couple of reasons. ePub offers reflowable text giving you flexibility to manipulate how the content is presented. Moreover, lots of cool features are now being developed for the reader like advanced video and audio. ePub is now an industry standard, so all of the "non-propreitary" hardware manufacturers are now supporting it.|
The Practical Heart
THE IMPRACTICAL TRUTH
Fact is is is Fable.
I did have a Great-aunt Muriel. Also true how one misguided streetcar stranded her whole family for life. By 1890, Muriel’s dashing father, author of the out-of-print Lotus Images in World Literature: A Reflection, debarred from university library privileges, fired from being “Raffles” of The Racing News, impatient at teaching holy English to mere Asia Minor foreigners, was forced at last to undertake full-frontal “trade.”
In a literary irony no sane writer would go near, he ended his career selling tablecloths and matching napkins at Marshall Field and Co., the very items from the same store that had accessorized his wife’s tragedy. With his groomed white beard and Longfellow grandeur, the man was put to use as a nine-to-five visual aid for women hoping to make their tables appear respectable as he. Ladies naturally gravitated toward a gent almost distinguished-looking enough to pose as some Scottish professor who’d published four books, who’d inherited a nineteen-room freehold house worthy of a name. Donald Fraser appeared, in fact, someone distinguished enough to have lost everything, and survived.
Maybe that—and not a family Sargent—becomes the lasting, ultimate Distinction? To have forfeited all your class trappings, but to remain somewhat standing. Here’s hoping that counts. It might be my own unlucky family’s single chance at amounting to anything, at getting on record. And might that matter? I have no choice, given our history, our story, but to believe it does. —Odd ...