From his home in New York City, the author, a former editor of Harper's magazine, looks back on his childhood in Sikeston, Mo., his student experiences at a Southern Baptist school and aimless years of drifting through jobs as a bank teller, bass player in a jazz combo, crisis-line volunteer for a mental health center in Illinois. Attributing his early lack of direction and initiative to a fear of experience engendered by growing up in a small town, he recounts how he eventually had to lift himself out of his comfortable and secure Midwestern life and move to Manhattan to pursue a writing career. While one can argue the premise that people raised in small towns have a limited sense of possibility, Teachout's reminiscences of the family gatherings, school plays and churchgoing Sundays that made up the fabric of his formative years exert a nostalgic charm nevertheless. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/30/1991 Release date: 10/01/1991 Genre: Nonfiction
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