Rescue Missions: Stories

Frederick Busch, Author . Norton $24.95 (316p) ISBN 978-0-393-06252-6

American letters endured a major loss in February 2006 with the sudden death of the author of North , The Night Inspector and 23 other books. Set in the present—from the battlefields of Iraq (two stories: "Good to Go" and "Patrols") to upstate New York (where Busch taught for many years)—these 15 works share a common theme of people trying to provide relief to those in physical, emotional and mental peril. In "One Last Time for Old Times' Sake," a married man tries to stop his lover from ending their affair so that she can nurse her dying husband. The recently widowed grandfather of a preschooler tries to recover his grandson's lost superhero cape and winds up in an encounter with the boy's teacher in "The Small Salvation." A woman hospitalized as a suicide risk, in "Metal Fatigue," challenges her father's notions of mercy during his visit. Some rescues are successful; others appear to fail; in many cases the rescuers are in the process of saving themselves. Together they offer an incisive examination of the idea of beneficence. (Oct.)

Reviewed on: 07/31/2006
Release date: 10/01/2006
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 316 pages - 978-0-393-33042-7
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