The Way That Water Enters Stone: Stories

John Dufresne, Author W. W. Norton & Company $18.95 (211p) ISBN 978-0-393-02924-6
Dufresne stares unblinkingly into the void in ordinary people's lives. The characters in this powerful debut short story collection desperately seek a salvation that they suspect will never come and yet, in just muddling through, his drifters, fast-food clerks, farmers, innkeepers, movie addicts, loners and losers achieve a certain dignity. Many search for a reference point to provide meaning, whether in an illegally grown tomato-garden, a smudge on a refrigerator door that seemingly erupts into ``the very face of Jesus,'' or in a fired science teacher's obsessive ruminations on a wife who keeps walking out on him. In ``Hard Time the First Time,'' a compulsive list-maker, living with a mentally handicapped roommate, tries to convince his estranged wife to cohabit with them as an extended family. In ``Must I Be Carried to the Sky on Flowered Beds of Ease?'' a terminally ill man, who may have AIDS, goes home to his alienated father's place to die. Winner of a PEN fiction award, Dufresne carves a fictional territory extending from the bleak Massachusetts of Andre Dubus to the godforsaken Deep South of Flannery O'Connor. His distinctive voice makes this realm his own. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 02/04/1991
Release date: 02/01/1991
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.