RARA-AVIS: Re: Erskine Caldwell...

From: Charlie Williams ( cs_will@hotmail.com)
Date: 05 Feb 2008

A bit redundant now because you've heard what you wanted to hear, but I can't help but join the Erskine Caldwell chorus of approval. Al introduced me to him (not literally) some time ago and I couldn't believe he'd slipped me by up until then. TB, GLA and THE BASTARD
(gotta love the title) are brilliantly observed, absorbing and full of demonic humour. And I don't think I've read a more stealthily powerful short story than Savannah River Payday.


---------- charliewilliams.net

--- In rara-avis-l@yahoogroups.com, "Allan Guthrie" <allan@...> wrote:
> Another couple of extraordinary Caldwell stories are 'Savannah
River Payday'
> and 'Saturday Afternoon'.
> 'The Bastard', a novella from 1929, is about an amoral loner and is
as noir
> as anything by Appel or Goodis.
> 'Poor Fool', 1930, is a tale of a gullible down-and-out boxer who
ends up in
> a house of horrors from which he is unable to leave. The character
> motivations are poor enough to make the book pretty weak when
looked at with
> a critical eye, but the story is surreal and engaging enough and I
> that the poor character motivations were deliberate, so I closed my
> eye and read on with the other one and found the whole thing
grotesque and
> fascinating.
> 'Tobacco Road', 1932, is a stunner. It's the story of the Lester
> Georgian sharecroppers who live in grinding poverty. It's brutal,
> absurd, hilarious and heart-breaking. It's one of those books that
make you
> want to read everything else the author's ever written. Did for me,
> Unfortunately, I haven't found another (yet) that lives up to TR.
> I've found something exceptional in each of them. For instance,
three scenes
> from 'Journeyman' have stayed with me -- one might even be my
favourite in
> all of fiction -- even though much of the book can be dismissed as
> lascivious nonsense.
> Al
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Mark R. Harris" <brokerharris@...>
> To: < rara-avis-l@yahoogroups.com>
> Sent: Monday, February 04, 2008 10:21 PM
> Subject: Re: RARA-AVIS: Re: Erskine Caldwell...
> > "Kneel to the Rising Sun" is a classic Caldwell story.
> >
> > On 2/4/08, jacquesdebierue <jacquesdebierue@...> wrote:

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