Stories of J. F. Powers

ISBN-10: 0940322226

ISBN-13: 9780940322226

Edition: 2000

Authors: J. F. Powers, Denis Donoghue

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J.F. Powers wrote about many things during his long career but his greatest interest was in the lives of priests in Chicago and the small towns of the American Midwest. This volume collects short stories from all periods of his career.
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Book details

List price: $19.95
Copyright year: 2000
Publisher: New York Review of Books, Incorporated, The
Publication date: 3/31/2000
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 592
Size: 5.00" wide x 8.00" long x 1.75" tall
Weight: 1.298
Language: English

"Powers is among the greatest of living storytellers," said Frank O'Connor---and his modest production has been chiefly in the medium of the short story. He has contributed to the New Yorker and other magazines. Early in his career he wrote with anger at the plight of the African American as well as his own humiliation during the Depression at being forced to accept jobs as salesclerk and insurance sales agent. Later, although "neither a determined and conscious apologist for the church of Rome, nor blindly revolting against her" (SR), he found his subjects in the lives of priests and their parishes, which he has treated with gentle irony. The New Yorker called Prince of Darkness (1947), his first collection, "varied and fresh stories, written in delightfully firm and straightforward prose, in which Mr. Powers proves that he has few rivals at creating characters with more than superficial reality." The N.Y. Times said of Presence of Grace (1956), "J. F. Powers is a largely endowed, careful and important short-story writer, one of the best in America. Some of the nine stories in his new collection are distinguished by a high astringent hilarity, and some are filled with terror and pity." His first novel, Morte d'Urban (1962), won him the 1963 National Book Award. Its "prose is clear, lean, and supple: it is the work of a master who has achieved virtuosity. . . . The gaiety of his wit . . . is pertinent here because Morte d'Urban could have been bitter, even savage, in its ridicule of a certain kind of priest" (Commonweal).

Denis Donoghue is University Professor and Henry James Professor of English and American Letters at New York University.

The Lord's Day
The Trouble
Lions, Harts, Leaping Does
He Don't Plant Cotton
The Forks
The Valiant Woman
The Eye
The Old Bird, A Love Story
Prince of Darkness
Death of a Favorite
The Poor Thing
The Devil Was the Joker
A Losing Game
Defection of a Favorite
Blue Island
The Presence of Grace
Look How the Fish Live
One of Them
Priestly Fellowship
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