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Red Car: Stories

Sallie Bingham, Author
Sallie Bingham, Author . Sarabande $21.95 (192p) ISBN 978-1-932511-59-8 ISBN 978-1-932511-60-4
Reviewed on: 01/21/2008
Release date: 12/01/2008
Paperback - 181 pages - 978-1-932511-60-4
Ebook - 190 pages - 978-1-936747-15-3
Open Ebook - 193 pages - 978-1-281-71700-9
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Hardened but not compromised by adult life, these 12 luminous stories from former National Book Critics Circle director Bingham (Transgressions ) feature narrators who find mature, often solitary forms of reckoning, and even happiness. The four-time married mother of a successful novelist in “A Gift for Burning” justifies to an interviewer everything from her selections for stand-in fathers to enabling her son’s substance abuse—all, she admits, because she was too distracted at the time to pay much attention to him. “That Winter” imagines a lone woman writer “of no particular age” braving it out in isolated southern Colorado until an emergency brings the welcome warmth, and gradual love, of an undemanding stranger. Several of the stories are set in France, such as “Sagesse,” which involves an American family vacationing in Normandy at the close of the WWII. Yet the most exotic locale remains the quiet neighborhood in sunny Florida of the title story, where the eponymous red ’65 Pontiac convertible rests at the curb after innumerable changes in ownership over the years, telling the story of the end of a marriage. There is not a false note in Bingham’s striking collection. (Apr.)

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