I, RHODA MANNING, GO HUNTING WITH MY DADDY
Following up on her critically acclaimed Collected Stories, Gilchrist delivers another satisfying collection. As her loyal readers have come to expect, her sure sense of place—whether New Orleans; Wyoming; San Francisco; or Fayetteville, Ark.—provides the backdrop for headstrong, independent narrators. Five of the 10 stories feature the Rhoda Manning of earlier collections; here, she is a woman in her 60s, reflecting on her life and her family—particularly the unshakable influence of her thoroughly masculine father, Big Dudley. As Rhoda relates tales of her youth and the ongoing struggle with her father over the lives of her own sons, who are living the counterculture life of the 1970s, she realizes that she is more like him than she would like to admit. Another well-loved character, Nora Jane Harwood, is featured in "Götterdämmerung," a suspenseful and eerily prescient story of terrorist assassins. New characters levelly and unsparingly investigate the time-honored themes of family and complicated love: the high school couple coping with some difficult life choices in "The Abortion"; a gay hairdresser in "Remorse," who considers what he could have done to prevent the death of his best friend, Sally Sue; and "Alone," featuring 14-year-old Ginny, who is making the best of the departure of her best friend, Sabra. With these new stories—rendered in direct, clear prose—Gilchrist proves again that the people and places she conjures resonate in a wider world. (Aug. 28)
Forecast:Gilchrist's strong reader base in the South anchors her sales, but the title of her latest outing should attract Rhoda Manning fans nationwide.
Release date: 08/01/2002