American Histories: Stories


Product Details

$16.00  $14.88
Scribner Book Company
Publish Date
5.3 X 8.0 X 0.5 inches | 0.4 pounds

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About the Author

John Edgar Wideman's books include, among others, Look for Me and I'll Be Gone, American Histories, Writing to Save a Life, Brothers and Keepers, Philadelphia Fire, Fatheralong, Hoop Roots, and Sent for You Yesterday. He won the PEN/Faulkner Award twice and has twice been a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and National Book Award. He is a MacArthur Fellow and a recipient of the Lannan Literary Award for Lifetime Achievement, and the PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in the Short Story. He divides his time between New York and France.


"With the scrupulous intelligence and meditative intensity that define all this author's work . . . . Mr. Wideman's explicit subject is racial injustice but his treatment of it quietly deepens into existential horror. . . . This, then, is not a book for the unwary. Mr. Wideman possesses a true and terrible vision of the tragic."
--Wall Street Journal
"A powerful assemblage of short stories exploring late-in-life angst through personal myth, cultural memory, and riffs on an empire scorched by its own hubris ... His prose, its twisting suntax, is a kind of stylish jazz of his own making."
--O Magazine
"Wideman's 50-year writing career has won him countless awards, and the author proves his continued vitality, reimagining historical figures with vigor and soul."
--Entertainment Weekly
"Race and its reverberations are at the core of this slim, powerful volume, a blend of fiction, memoir, and reimagined history, in which the boundaries between those forms are murky and ever shifting."
--Boston Globe
"John Edgar Wideman's latest book feels like a coda to his impressive body of work. He deftly incorporates a range of black names from the 20th century -- Emmett Till, Jean-Michel Basquiat -- in his riffs, then plunges deeper into history."
--Seattle Times
"John Edgar Wideman has established himself as one of the country's most formally inventive writers ... an important addition to Mr. Wideman's body of writing and a remarkable demonstration of his ability to address social issues through a range of fictional forms and styles."
--Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
"Wideman . . . boldly subverts what a short story can be in this wonderful collection. . . . Each story feels new, challenging, and exhilarating, beguilingly combining American history with personal history."
--Publishers Weekly, starred review
"Linked by astringent wit, audacious invention, and a dry sensibility whose owner has for decades wrestled with what he describes as "the puzzle of how and why and where and who we come from." Wideman's recent work strides into the gap between fiction and nonfiction as a means of disclosing hard, painful, and necessary truths.
--Kirkus, starred review
"Wideman's shape-shifting, lyrical narratives offer mesmerizing and challenging perspectives on the creative process and the black experience, decisively affirming his stature as a major voice in American literature."
--Booklist, starred review